Need just a bit more technical know-how? Try Staff Augmentation.
Posted by Todd Reed on December 19, 2017
You have a website development team on staff that can handle just about anything you throw at them. But what happens when the occasional custom project crops up? Or a much-needed upgrade needs to happen? Is it just a bit beyond your team's bandwidth…or know-how? If you just need that little additional boost of support on occasion, you should consider the concept of technical staff augmentation.
I've just come out of an engagement with just this type of scenario. Recently, a client had a highly-customized Kentico platform in need of an upgrade. While the implemented customizations worked great for what the site and client needed, they also made it very difficult to follow Kentico's best practices for upgrading, particularly when ongoing development was happening at the same time.
The client felt that while they had the technical chops to take on this type of project, they also could see the value in bringing in outside Kentico help to more efficiently achieve their upgrade while still keeping their regular development efforts moving along. This is where I came in.
AN INTEGRATED APPROACH
A key to success in staff augmentations is to be sure you integrate your outside help as much as possible. Instead of having me work in a black box where the client would provide me with the needed code and database backups and then magically expect me to provide finished code, I was completely engaged and folded into their environment.
While I didn't work on site, I was essentially considered a member of their team for the duration of the project. I attended the team's daily stand-ups, following their workflow process and using their daily tools. I was a part of daily code reviews, troubleshooting and bug fixes of all kinds and ranks, and even a part of the release team.
WHY DOES THIS WORK?
This integrated type of working environment allowed the whole team to be more collaborative, allowing everyone to learn and contribute to the completed work. While I may have brought with me the specific Kentico experience that augmented that of their team's know-how, it would not have been a successful project without the support and buy-in from the existing team. It also left a strong foundation for their technical staff going forward, giving them a better understanding of how their systems work.
When this type of engagement ends, I've found that both parties have benefited from it: Not only has the existing in-place team learned new things about their system that they may not have known or been exposed to before, but it also allowed me new insight into their processes and tools. If this client ever needs future staff augmentation needs, I'll be up to speed on their systems from the start.
AND BENEFITS BEYOND…
While this may appear to be a high-level view of a staff augmentation project, it's actually more than it seems. In the above scenario, one developer was brought in to help with a backlog of work and an upgrade. But when you augment your staff with a BlueModus developer, you're not just bringing in a single technical expert, you're gaining access to a wealth of .NET CMS knowledge. With the entire BlueModus "brain" at your disposal, it will no doubt help get you through the toughest part of any CMS project.
Interested in how BlueModus can assist your team achieve its goals? Contact us today!
Todd Reed is a Senior Web Developer at BlueModus. As a Kentico Certified Developer and Microsoft .NET expert, Todd has been providing technological solutions and expertise to clients for more than 15 years. Todd has worked at multiple advertising agencies, in all aspects of the web development process, and taken well over 40 websites from inception to completion. Coding both front end and back end, his expertise spans industries ranging from government websites to economic development clients. When not busy coding, you'll most likely find him jamming to some '80s metal.