By Vitaly Kuprenko 

COVID-19 made people work from home. All the businesses have their workers remote. However, companies have to work and get revenue.

In the case of COVID-19, people spend more time online. As a result, it’s an excellent time to launch a superb app or website. To create software, you need to cooperate with experienced software developers. So, the question arises — how to manage the software development team remotely during the coronavirus outbreak?

In this guide, we’ve prepared the top eight tips that help you lead software developers. Also, we’ve provided you with a list of tools that you can use to manage their work. Using our tips and tools, you can expect good working results.

Tips to Lead the Software Development Team During COVID-19

Managing software development teams can be tricky, so you need to prepare beforehand. Below you can find eight tips to achieve better results.

  • Tip #1. Consider your expectations and set them to your workers.
  • Tip #2. Brainstorm the ideas with department leads.
  • Tip #3. Create and implement remote work policies.
  • Tip #4. Use cloud-based tools to manage tasks
  • Tip #5. Provide feedback to software developers.
  • Tip #6. Communicate more than in the office.
  • Tip #7. Schedule video calls.
  • Tip #8. Trust your employees.

Tip #1. Consider and Set Your Expectations

Approximately half of the American workers don’t know what’s expected from them at work. It’s especially bad for remote workers. You need to create a list of your expectations. It’s better to write down all the details. In this case, you can achieve better results.

Also, you need to set a clear deadline for each task. It allows seeing the developers’ progress and estimating the working time more precisely.

Understanding the task better, software developers manage to conquer tasks fast and effectively.

Tip #2. Brainstorm the Ideas with Department Lead

In the case of a big company, it’s necessary to discuss the current situation with the top managers in the department. It’s evident that they know their team members better and can offer useful variants for remote work.

Additionally, you need to discuss the way to control employees. For example, there can be tasks with the estimated time for a day.

Top managers can brainstorm ideas to make the remote work comfortable for each team member. They need to think over daily meetings, communication methods, and so on.

Tip #3. Create and Implement Remote Work Policies

Merely saying, work policies stand for rules that your workers should follow working from home. Having a list of such rules, software developers team members understand their duties and timetable.

To give you a hint, we’ve considered the following points of remote working policies:

  • There are two obligatory daily meetings for all team members (in the morning and the evening).
  • Response time in working messenger shouldn’t exceed 20 minutes.
  • Team members should set a status ‘Lunch’ when they have a break.

You can add more points according to your company’s needs and requirements.

Tip #4. Use Cloud-Based Tools to Manage Tasks

Software developers aren’t in the office, so it’s more complicated for them to manage their tasks. These days, there are various task managers that can work online. In this case, all team members have access to the task board. Also, some task managers offer to comment on tasks and attach different files. As a result, software developers can look through any change in the tasks.

The modern market is full of task managers. You need to pick one with user-friendly design and required features. Project management tools allow managing the working process more effectively.

It’s common to use management tools to track the time spent on development. As a result, it’s easy to calculate software development costs.

Tip #5. Provide Feedback to Software Developers

To motivate workers, you need to give constant feedback (especially in the COVID-19 situation). Members of the software development team need to understand the task progress and what should be done next.

In the case of software developers, project managers should explain developers ‘ requirements and expectations. Also, project managers need to make sure that software builders have understood the project requirements right.

Tip #6. Communicate More Than in the Office

Communication is vital for managing software development teams during COVID-19. So, you need to choose a convenient tool to communicate. For example, there are various messengers like Slack, Skype, and Twist.

Your team members need to have a communication channel to get instant answers during the day.

As a result, you can achieve better task management and faster communication. Also, members of the software development team need to set a status ‘Lunch’ to show other workers when they are offline.

Tip #7. Schedule Video Calls

Video calls allow seeing the atmosphere around the team members. Also, having two scheduled video calls, software developers will be more organized.

It’s better to have two daily meetings — in the morning and in the evening. Before starting the day, the team has an opportunity to discuss their plans for the day. In the evening, they can share tasks or some issues that occur during the development.

Such video calls have one more benefit. You or department leads can control the development and any changes.

Tip #8. Trust Your Employees

Last but not least, you need to trust the members of your software development team. Of course, you can control everything, especially when they work remotely.

Trusting your employees, you can build long-term successful relationships. It’s better to monitor the software development process, but not to micromanage developers.

As you can, there are a lot of hints that can help you manage the development team during COVID-19. Moreover, a bunch of tools and programs make management and communication as easy and comfortable as possible.

Top Tools to Manage Remote Software Developers

  • Basecamp. This software solution is perfect for project management. It allows creating to-do lists, managing and sharing files, scheduling meetings, and so on. Basecamp is popular due to its user-friendly interface. You need to pay $99 per month to use Basecamp with an unlimited number of users.
  • Redmine. One more project management application with a convenient interface. This software solution offers to add various plugins and themes. Among Redmine features are abilities to track time, create task boards, and so on.
  • Slack. Slack is an excellent solution for those who need to be in touch constantly. Creating Slack channels, you can ensure that members of the software development team know the latest information about the project. Employees can talk both in private and public chats, set up reminders, and highlight important messages.
  • Fleep. This software solution is a similar messenger which improves cross-functional team communication. It provides the function of scheduling tasks. Fleep can be integrated with Google Hangouts and gives the opportunity to pin important messages.
  • Google Hangouts. This solution from Google allows having group video calls. It’s perfect for daily video meetings. It can be integrated with various messengers, so the users are notified at the beginning of the call.
  • Scoro. This solution has a bunch of cool features like to-do lists, reminders, time tracking, and so on. Scoro assists team members in reporting on the work progress. However, using Scoro for big teams can be quite expensive. It costs $22 per month for one user.

As you can see, various tools can help you manage remote software development teams during COVID-19. All of them work online, so that users can access from any place and gadget.

To sum up our article, leading remote software developers can be complicated. However, using various tools and scheduling meetings, you can manage them effectively and achieve good results.

Author Bio

Vitaly Kuprenko is the technical writer at Cleveroad. It is a software development company located in Eastern Europe. His mission is to provide people with interesting material about innovations in the world of IT.

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