I wrote some time ago an article about how to organize product development teams and about some changes we made â€‹â€‹in the software development teams at Locaweb.
Since last year we have been focusing in productivity, i.e., how our software development teams at Locaweb could produce more without hiring more people and without dropping the quality of the software being delivered.
The chart below shows our numbers. We recorded the number of deliveries per week and, as you can see in the chart, in few weeks we were able to more than quadrupled the number of deliveries per week.
This increase in productivity occurred when the team grew only 10% in number of people, i.e., we cannot credit the increased productivity to the increase of people in our teams.
When there is an increase like the one presented above, besides the natural questioning of whether the increase in productivity is due to the increase of people, another common questioning is about whether there was a decline in the quality of deliveries. One of the quality measurements that we make is the number of rollbacks. As you can see below, despite the productivity increase, the number of rollbacks actually decreased by 40%!
There is no silver bullet, there were several actions we took and we are sure that there are still more actions that can be taken to increase productivity even further. Here is a list of what we did.
In addition to these points above, we are beginning to experience some additional aspects that will certainly have an impact on productivity:
We are confident that with the above two points that we are starting to experiment now, we can increase productivity by 10x or even more! \O/
And certainly there are certainly other points that we haven’t even considered yet and that when we start to discuss and treat, may impact productivity even further.
As I said above there is no silver bullet, but there was one specific action taken that had crucial impact here: making productivity an important theme in our conversations. Everybody started to talk about productivity, what impacts productivity and how to address these points. This movement did start several changes and experiments that helped us to greatly increase our productivity. If you also want to increase the productivity of your software development team, put this issue as a central theme of their conversations and make lots of experiments. You’ll see how there is room to greatly improve the productivity of your software development teams.
In 2015 I wrote a book on Software Product Management in Portuguese. In the beginning of 2016, Paulo Caroli talked to me about how he enjoyed the book and how this book could be useful to people in the software industry not only in Brazil but anywhere in the world. For this reason, we decided to create an English version of my book.
The book is organized in 5 sections:
This book is suitable for anyone working with software. Even companies that do not have software as its core business use software in their day to day and often have developed some software that interfaces with its customers such as a website or a mobile application. It is important for these companies to understand the software product management role and responsibilities, so they can better manage this software and increase its chances of success.
We are working on the translation but as we progress we are already releasing the content. If you want to see the work in progress, please visit the book page at LeanPub. Still in beta but already with valuable content. Feedbacks are not only welcome, but needed!