Getting Started with Distributed Teams

Let’s face it. Hiring and retaining software engineers is hard and only getting harder. A HackerRank survey of over 1,000 hiring managers highlights common pain points: finding qualified candidates, evaluating their background, and performing interviews.

Combined with an increased time to hire and stiffer competition for talent, many companies are exploring a shift to distributed teams. Some, like Automattic, InVision, Zapier and Buffer are 100% distributed.

Thankfully, you don’t have to eliminate your office and go 100% remote to reap the benefits of a distributed workforce. Any hiring policy that allows engineering managers to source talent from a global pool will bring a wider range of skills and experience, reduce turnover, and attract the 53.3% of developers surveyed by stack Overflow who rank distributed work as the top priority. Increased productivity and efficiency, lower overhead costs, and a consistent talent pipeline are further benefits of distributed teams.

The advances in tools for video conferencing, online chat, and project management have powered this transition. Remote managers can now communicate both synchronously and asynchronously with their teams, and maintain an increased sense of both camaraderie and oversight.

Andela and our 180+ partner companies have tested and refined expert recommendations for building and maintaining successful distributed teams. The following guidelines, best practices, checklists, and tips will help your remote developers ramp quickly, communicate clearly, integrate with the team, and accelerate your team’s product development.

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