Digital agencies work with dedicated web development teams for many reasons. For some, it's a way to focus on consultancy, marketing, and design only; for others — a drastic increase in the potential talent pool.
We've been working with digital agencies in Europe and the US for years now. This experience can help you be more productive with your dedicated team, and we want to share it.
But if you aren't sure yet if a dedicated team is something you need, read our article about choosing between dedicated teams, in-house developers, and freelancers first.
Tip #1: Find comfort in sharing responsibilities
Sharing responsibilities is the benefit of working with dedicated teams. A dedicated team can free you up to focus on things that have a direct link to your agency's success.
But you can reap these benefits only if your core team is comfortable working with a dedicated team. And this can be tricky to achieve.
What we've found works best — in this case, and many others — is clear communication.
Start by identifying what to delegate to the dedicated team and what to keep in-house. Dedicated teams provide an easy way to add more people to your team, but only when you need them.
For instance, your in-house web development team might be struggling with a continuously growing pool of tasks — you can add one or two dedicated developers to the mix, and the problem is solved. Or you've just signed a great client, and they are looking for a mobile app. You have a choice: hire in-house for this one project, or find a dedicated mobile development team and get the job done.
The point here is to ensure that your core team sees your dedicated team as help, not competition. A dedicated team won't substitute the people in your office, but it can help them do amazing things — this is the message you should get across.
Tip #2: Start with a few smaller tasks
If it's your first time working with a dedicated agency, start slow. You shouldn't commit unless you are sure you want to.
This is what Elevated Third, a US digital agency we work with, did when considering to work with our Drupal developers. We helped them complete a few tasks here and there, and now we have several developers working with the client full time.
Many digital agencies prefer testing dedicated teams on a small project or a few smaller tasks. For instance, you can delegate a project to support. Product maintenance and support involve a variety of tasks, which lets you see many of the team's processes and approaches right away.
Tip #3: Onboard your dedicated team in person
A great way to get to know someone is to meet them in person. And you should meet your dedicated team before you start working with them. Do this by inviting them to your office or visiting their location.
Many of our clients visit Lemberg HQ in Lviv, and the experience is overwhelmingly positive. All in all, it's a great way to learn about one another, and not just from a long list of emails and Slack messages.
Tip #4: Provide feedback and be open to receiving it
Clear and concise feedback should become your primary collaboration tool. It will provide an opportunity to share your vision productively and help your dedicated team deliver up to your standards.
And you should always encourage the dedicated team to share feedback on working with you. Feedback is the most beneficial when people exchange — and not just provide — it.
When working with a Norwegian consultancy company Ny Media, we relied heavily on feedback. In a way, feedback is the reason why our collaboration proved successful. It helped us better understand the client and provide them with a dedicated team they wanted.
Tip #5: Assign a project manager to streamline communication
A great way to build clear communication is to narrow down your touchpoints. For instance, by assigning a project manager.
Project managers make sure the project gets done. On their way there, they break project requirements into manageable tasks, assign those tasks to people on the team, and follow the progress.
But what's most important — a project manager will keep you informed. Whatever questions or concerns you have about the project, your project manager can answer them. This is especially helpful with teams that grow in size: you project manager would be one of the people responsible for onboarding new teammates.
Tip #6: Run retrospective analysis after each project
Retrospective analysis is, in itself, feedback on the project as a whole. It helps you see how the project went and how you can improve future projects.
We see project retrospective as a vital part of improving team performance. And many of our clients choose to get involved, especially if they are planning to continue working with our dedicated team.
A dedicated team can become a reliable partner to your digital agency. Here are six of our tips to help you build a productive collaboration with dedicated teams:
- Share responsibilities in a way that ensures your core team is comfortable working with dedicated developers.
- Work your cooperation up from smaller tasks to see if you are clicking with the dedicated team.
- Meet your dedicated team in person, and consider visiting their location.
- Provide clear and concise feedback about your experience working with a dedicated team, and also be open to receiving such feedback.
- For larger teams, assign a project manager to ensure a clear line of communication.
- Be part of project retrospectives to improve your partnership with the dedicated team continuously.
Find your dedicated web development team at Lemberg
As you might've gathered, we are partners to several digital agencies around the world. Together, we build and support impressive web and mobile projects.
Would you like to learn more about dedicated teams at Lemberg? Then send a message to our Business Developer Rostyslav Vikovych. Roy can answer any questions you might have about web and mobile development.