The best developers are ten times more effective than average developers, even though they may work for a similar number of hours per day. They are the elusive ‘10x developers’ every software company looks for. Through sheer diligence and consistency, great developers automatically set up their software for long term success and eliminate the risk of code-related problems to a great extent. That is why big companies like the FAANGs heap high salaries and perks on the best software developers. Naturally, they succeed at retaining these individuals, while smaller companies have to settle for the next best.
Code written on the other side of the world will work the same no matter where or on what device it is run. Consequently, smart entrepreneurs and businesses have realised that almost overnight, they can gain access to a global talent pool that is on par with Silicon Valley’s best, at a fair cost. Such flexibility and value for money can be vital to a fast-growing company or SME that cannot afford the time-consuming process of recruitment and onboarding.
Founders of companies like GitHub, Slack, AppSumo, and Groove understood that harnessing remote product engineering teams can accelerate their growth, though nobody hailed them for those decisions at the time. But thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, remote product engineering is now commonplace.
The myths that prevented remote product engineering from taking off
- Remote workers are not as productive as on-site workers The COVID-19 pandemic shattered this myth, and it is now very clear that remote workers can be just as productive as their on-site counterparts. Within the last 12 months, big names like Shopify, Coinbase, Box, VMWare, Fujitsu, Pinterest, Dropbox, and Square Enix have all announced their decision to become remote-first companies. Even giants like Facebook, Twitter, and Google have decided to allow a significant number of their employees to work remotely on a permanent basis.
- Remote teams are bad at communicating effectively The ubiquity of affordable, low latency communication and project management platforms such as Zoom, Slack, Jira, and Asana have shown that it is possible to build and maintain transparent and high quality business relationships almost entirely online, especially when it comes to building software.
- Language and cultural barriers are difficult to overcome The prevalence of high speed internet across the world has helped homogenise workplace culture and practices within the last decade or so. A software developer in Sri Lanka or the Philippines today speaks the same language, uses much of the same slang, watches the same movies, reads the same books, and dresses the same way as a counterpart in the United States.
- Remote workers are hard to manage and coordinate, and can’t be trusted As COVID-19 forced the entire world to trial remote work, employees have exhibited the willingness to remain productive and accountable for their work if they are trusted to do so by their employers.
Today, it is easier than at any point in history for a team of remote workers to be seamlessly integrated into the day-to-day workings of a company. If you’re a CEO, CTO, or a founder, there is nothing stopping you from leveraging remote work to build an adaptable, fast-growing tech company.
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