4 steps to building a successful engineering team
Every well-known organization in the world owes its success to its employees. It’s the team behind the product or solution that ultimately determines how successful a company will become.
Building a great engineering team starts with hiring the right people, especially if you’re looking to find a developer for your startup. Once you’ve hired them, it’s important to keep them, as it costs a lot more money to hire a new employee than to retain a current one. Culture, management style, and a feeling of ownership in the company and the product are all things that affect how successful your team will be.
At iTechArt, we’ve been helping companies put together their engineering “dream teams” for several years. We’ve learned a lot about what works and what doesn’t work when it comes to success. If you’re wondering what the best practices are as far as how to find developers or how to find a CTO, here are a few things to consider.
1. Focus on the employee “persona”
If you do a quick search of any of the major job sites, you’ll notice that all of the job descriptions for a technical advisor or engineer kind of look the same. They’re somewhat generic and monotonous. That’s because they’re basically the same job description that’s been used over and over to fill a particular type of position.
When it comes to how to find programmers for a startup, rather than just focusing on the skills, education, and experience needed for the job, you need to also consider the personality of the candidate and what drives them towards success. This is especially true when looking for CTO talent. How will this person fit in with the culture of your company and with his or her future coworkers and subordinates?
Sales and marketing teams create detailed buyer personas to pinpoint their ideal customer. Tech managers should do the same thing when it comes to hiring their next engineer.
2. Know your culture
Before you can pinpoint how to hire software engineers, you need to understand why people would want to work for your company in the first place. If someone asked you to describe your company’s culture, what would you say? You might know how you feel about working there, but what about the rest of the team? What about your organization stands out that would make talented engineers want to come and work for you?
Talk to some of your employees and ask them what they love most about working at the company. Also, ask them what they don’t love and how you could improve it. Having these types of discussions on a regular basis helps a company chart the right course when it comes to providing a great workplace environment.
A company’s culture and how it is perceived is one of the most important aspects of attracting, retaining and nurturing the best talent.
3. Brainstorm with your current team
If you want to find a software developer that will be the perfect fit for your team, you should start by listening to that team. Whenever you need to hire a new person, start by holding a brainstorming session with your current team in order to get their feedback. It’s a good idea to get them involved while you’re creating the employee persona mentioned previously.
What do they think is missing from the team? What type of person would they enjoy working with? Is there a specific area of expertise that it is needed that no one on the team currently has?
Not only will you get a better idea of who you need to hire and find a developer that will be the perfect fit, you’ll be increasing your team morale by letting them know they have a say in the hiring and that their input is very valuable.
4. Don’t limit yourself when it comes to building your dream team
Diversity is key if you want to have a truly dynamic and creative development team. Plus, it’s hard to find developers for startup organizations with limited budgets. You’re not always going to find that diversity or affordability in the city or town where your business is located.
Be open to having some of your team members work remotely. This exposes you to the widest talent pool possible. Of course, managing a remote team can be a challenge itself. But the benefits and cost-savings are definitely worth it.
Building a successful engineering team starts with knowing your company, its culture, and what drives people to want to come and work for you. It also involves finding the best talent, and once hired, keeping that talent. The key is to make sure each employee knows that what they do every single day contributes to the overall success of the company. Make them proud of the work they do, and they’ll make you proud of your organization in return.
Want more tips on how to recruit and retain your engineering dream team? Attend this year’s CTO Summit in San Francisco. iTechArt is a Platinum Sponsor! If you’re just looking to hire someone to build an app or any other solution, let us know!