This is part of our How We Work series of blog posts. Today, we’re talking about the team members we'll assign to client projects.The Key Questions
The questions we'll answer are:
- Do you outsource work to contractors or other agencies?
- How do you schedule team members for my project?
- How often will they be working?
- Who are those different team members and what are their roles?
- Who will be managing my account?
- How quickly can we start?
Do You Outsource Work to Contractors or Other Agencies?
We get a lot of questions about the way we work. The most common one is, "Do you have full-time employees or do you rely on contractors?" We are a US-based company with a team of full-time employees located all over the United States and Latin America. We believe in the team and culture we've built, and having full-time resources is crucial. In some circumstances, we will encounter aspects of projects that are better suited for a specialist or another agency. If this happens, we'll be the first to call it out, and we will work with you to make sure the project is properly resourced.
So with those questions out of the way, let's talk about how we structure our teams.
How Do You Schedule Team Members For My Project & How Often Will They be Working?
Your Very team will be available to you for active collaboration during normal business hours. Instead of email, the best way to reach your team is through Slack: our communications hub. We also regularly use Google Hangouts for valuable face-to-face (virtual) interactions.
Who Are Those Different Team Members and What are Their Roles?
Core team members work an average of 32 focused hours per week and are dedicated solely to your project for the entirety of our engagement. Maintaining a consistent team composition day after day, week after week, creates less waste and more efficiency, so your project moves forward at a steady pace.
Front-End Developers / UX designers
UX designers are a critical part of modern application development. But too often, UX designers create a mockup, hand it off to developers, and move on to the next project. At Very, our UX designers also serve as front-end engineers, making the gap between design and development non-existent.
Our back-end engineers work in teams of two using a process called pair programming. This approach leads to better quality, fewer defects and greater levels of overall efficiency over the lifecycle of the project. It also gives every project an added level of redundancy.
Data Science Engineers
With the increased popularity of artificial intelligence, big data, and machine learning, we've found that many clients need dedicated data science engineers to be responsible for data strategy. This role can be responsible for crafting data acquisition strategies, defining internal workflows and applying state-of-the-art technologies and techniques to your project.
Who Will be Managing my Account?
One of our senior leadership team members serves as product manager and primary account manager. During your release planning phase, we'll determine if they need to serve in a dedicated capacity, working only on your project, or if they can be effective managing your project in addition to other client projects. Their role is about driving the project forward: they ensure that the best practices are followed and that the right questions are asked and answered.
Product managers provide unbiased insight related to product development and business model validation. While they may participate in regularly scheduled checkpoints, they typically do not have daily accountabilities or tasks within the project.
Product managers are available to you for one-on-one consulting and guidance: as part of the advisory fee, you have access to — and support from — the entire advisory team and skill sets within the Very network of companies.
How Quickly Can We Start?
We do our best to start your project as quickly as possible. We schedule teams full-time on projects and assign your team based on the experiences and skills that are most relevant to your project.
Typically, we expect four to six weeks from the date our SOW is signed until a team is scheduled. Sometimes, when the stars align, we can make it happen faster. It's imperative that we know about urgent deadlines as we're building the SOW.