Today I was asked by a client to give them some reasons why they should outsource to reinteractive instead of hiring an in house team. They needed to convince their Board the pros and cons of setting up an internal software development team from scratch versus using reinteractive. The project under discussion was the implementation a bunch of key features for their platform as well as a partial rewrite of key aspects.
Unsurprisingly, I've been asked this question several times by our clients, and my response has almost always been the same; do both.
I must say, it made me smile when I heard of a prospective client who called in last week saying, “I’ve been looking to hire a senior Rails developer and you guys seem to have all the best ones.” Now, of course we will work with her to fill in any gaps and help her onboard new developers, as we have done for many other clients.
But it really validates our hard work to create a workplace that attracts some of the top talent in the country. We pride ourselves on our approach to remote work, team accomplishment and happiness.
I’ve been working remotely in my capacity as a salesperson since July 2014. I have greatly appreciated the opportunity of working remotely as I can help my wife run her law practice by occasionally taking care of our two young children. There is sometimes work that needs to be done after the kids go to sleep but I have helped my boss, Mikel Lindsaar, grow the company consistently for the last six months as the Sales Manager for Asia Pacific.
Most of the employees at reinteractive are developers. All of the developers work remotely and working remotely is a condition stated in their contracts. Some companies struggle with the concept of remote work and the struggle is largely in answering the question: "how do you manage a remote developer?"
While growing reinteractive I have been asked many times how we operate. I've been asked this by prospective clients and by prospective staff. I thought it would make sense to write up a blog post covering the key points on how our developers and team work at reinteractive and what parts of our development process are important to us.
Having our entire team work remotely is a strong management point for us. Our remote team encourages focused work without the large distractions of an office environment. Of course, this means that you can't shout a question across the office, or go and interrupt another team member, we see this as a good thing. However, team communication matters so we have numerous Flowdock channels to communicate on each project. This has the added advantage of information being recorded, allowing for any team member to "get up to speed" on what is happening after a short absence by reading the log of what has been said.
When I applied for my job at reInteractive, Mikel mentioned that all of reInteractive’s employees work remotely. It took me a while to fully grasp the concept that there was no actual office. Now, when I tell others about my awesome job, I get responses like “I could never do that” or “Isn’t it boring to work from home?” I look back to my previous job and think isn’t it boring to work from an office?
So, then what’s it really like?
One of the things I am most proud of at reInteractive is that we are a group of individuals, all with the clear purpose of exchanging high quality software with our clients that help them achieve their goals; and we do that 100% remotely.
My management team and I don't monitor our team minute by minute. Our team members have the latitude to walk away from their computer at 3pm to go spend an hour or two with their kids or schedule their day in any way they like. As long as they take responsibility for delivering top quality work and handling their job.
It might sound trite, but the importance of communication in the success of a software project cannot be overemphasised. If given the choice between over communicating and under communicating, I'll choose going overboard every time.
There are many tools and processes to help communication levels remain high, both within the project team and with clients. This post I will talk about three of the most important:
One of the things you need to come to grips with when you start expanding an organisation like reInteractive is that while you try and keep as much stability as possible, and make the work environment as awesome as possible for your team, eventually, individuals want to move on and take up other opportunities.
And so, I want to announce that as of the 23rd of October, 2013, Jason Stirk has moved on to new opportunities. Jason has been with us since December 2010, almost 3 years of hard, dedicated service and I thank him for all the work he has put in to help bring reInteractive up from two team members when he joined to the sixteen it is today.
Originally from Byron Bay. My mother is a web designer from the early days, so I started creating my first websites on things like GeoCities when I was a kid. While I may not look it, I've always been the nerdy, shy kid who spent most of my younger years sitting in front of a computer.
Always loved technology and had creative pursuits, got very into digital illustration and design at a young age - my sense of design evolved from there.
We're thrilled to announce our newest team member Ruby on Rails Developer Pavel Kotlyar.
Born in the Soviet Union, Pavel moved to Australia 6 years ago and will be working with the reInteractive team remotely from the Gold Coast. He has spent the last ten years working with various programming languages and technologies, but since finding Ruby, Pavel has never looked back! He has worked for small web design companies, large software development shops and a number of startups, so we’re very excited to have him join our awesome team.