Collaborate.            Innovate.Accelerate.Creating successful software requires a new model of development and a new kin...
In recent decades, software development      thinking that we can build software the      years. There was steady availabi...
industry, quickly and often disruptively,          mentality.”¹ Certain unique attributescreating new possibilities and a ...
given opportunities to improve, and         This is learned through trial and error,     the desire to practice and perfec...
pushed to continually advance their        emerge when people have the courage toskills, where they’re expected to thinkan...
“Members of high-performance groups          companies. Finding one that embodies       to learn new things. A partner gui...
the development process,” according to areport from the Wharton School ofBusiness. “Both share a common goal: to          ...
lessons learned from other projects and       Nearshore, value-driven custom web andkeep things moving forward.           ...
department in 1999, but now is the headof mobile strategy from his office in NewYork City. The company awarded him a      ...
development projects with different        architecture choices for the product        That enthusiasm was exhibited by th...
teenage consumers, the beverage                to bring IT thinking to the idea-            variable code quality, and dif...
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Collaborate, Innovate, Accelerate


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Focusing on the future of software development beyond the traditional “software factory” approach, this publication, Collaborate, Innovate, Accelerate, by Nearshore Americas & Ci&T, highlights the emergence of high performance development teams who have been proven to drive down costs and generate greater business value for their customers.

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Collaborate, Innovate, Accelerate

  1. 1. Collaborate. Innovate.Accelerate.Creating successful software requires a new model of development and a new kind of development team
  2. 2. In recent decades, software development thinking that we can build software the years. There was steady availability ofhas gone through an “industrialization” same way we build cars. skilled technical manpower, low pricesprocess. Just like the introduction of the and English fluency. Not surprisingly, aassembly line and other mass production The idea behind the “software factory” great amount of repetitive process worktechniques transformed manufacturing as originally defined was that process and programming jobs migrated fromin the first half of the 20th century, the dominates, and that people were companies with developed economiesintroduction of software engineering somewhat dispensable. Once we had the to India.practices and increasingly sophisticated right process and methodology, anyonetools has transformed the way we build with appropriate training could do the By its very nature, the “factory” approach doesn’tsoftware. The “software factory” has job. This mentality permeated the ITbecome a common term, as has the services industry in India for the past 20 allow you the creative collaboration that’s essential to building innovative products. That model no longer works as it once did. The archaic model of outsourcing based on cost arbitrage and the interaction based on heavy specifications and processes crushed the motivation of IT professionals, along with their ability to innovate and uniquely solve problems. This becomes a bigger problem when one considers that problem-solving through innovation is ultimately the greatest benefit technology can offer. Meanwhile, just a few decades after its birth, software is transforming everyCollaborate. Innovate. Accelerate. Page 1
  3. 3. industry, quickly and often disruptively, mentality.”¹ Certain unique attributescreating new possibilities and a newcompetitive environment in each sector. define that kind of partner: Principles of Lean Development Add ValueWhat is happening in the entertainment, TALENT. 1. Eliminate Waste cycle atmobile, gaming and retail industries is Although you might not have the Don’t write unnecessary code or the start ofjust a taste of the transformation that opportunity to examine the abilities of an functions or add useless bureaucracy; every project,lies ahead. IT provider’s junior staff, you can often employ the “retrospective” period to whether it’s judge by the talent of the team leaders. identify waste and figure out how to developing aThis transformation, and the growing As John Halamka M.D., CIO of Harvard avoid it. Planning is necessary and a new design orinvestment across industries, is putting Medical School, says: “My experience is good practice, but trying to anticipate defining a repetitivemore pressure on the ecosystem of that “A” players hire “A” players and details and decisions far ahead of the work process.service providers to be agile and “B” players hire “C” players. This means real need may give a false feeling ofinnovative experts. This introduces that highly competent people surround certainty to things that will change for 4. Deliver Fast, and Iterateopportunities for new players and themselves with skilled people because sure – transforming the plan and the Don’t let things get bogged down. Andifferent models of value creation they do not feel intimidated by having decisions into pure waste. agile team picks up the slack to fill inthrough technology. A completely new subordinates or colleagues who are when someone else is stuck on aera is emerging ahead and new rules are smarter, more talented, or more 2. Build-in Quality function or process. Break a project inabout to transform our whole industry successful.” Don’t count on finding bugs later: Avoid many small iterations – do not try toagain. The “software factory” is no introducing them in the first place. anticipate everything: deliver quickly,longer good enough. An organization that can provide true Incorporate test-driven development, use learn with the user’s response, then “partner players” is able to do so constant feedback. incorporate the feedback immediately.By its very nature, the “factory” because it knows how to keep the mostapproach doesn’t allow you the creative talented people working there. Managers 3. Stress Continuous 5. Optimize thecollaboration that’s essential to building understand what motivates top talent. It Improvement Whole Value Streaminnovative products. That kind of doesn’t just recruit “A” players; it retains Implement the PDCA Cycle: Plan > Do > Enlist a multi-disciplined, multi-talentedoutcome requires a high-performance “A” players. “A” players want to keep Check > Act. It’s a cycle – a circular, team — also known as a high-team that exhibits what Forrester working there because they’re never-ending process, meant to be performance team.Research, Inc. calls a “partner player challenged, they’re motivated, they’re repeated over and over. Implement the1 “Case Study: Ci&T – High Performance, Brazilian Style,” Forrester Research, Inc., March 7, 2011Collaborate. Innovate. Accelerate. Page 2
  4. 4. given opportunities to improve, and This is learned through trial and error, the desire to practice and perfect a task.they’re allowed to explore things they’re through iteration after iteration, through This is achieved by starting early andinterested in. The camaraderie of other practice. learning quickly. A great example thatdedicated professionals is also a Gladwell cites is The Beatles playing incherished perk for talented individuals. In his book Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell Hamburg clubs nearly every night for discusses the 10,000-Hour Rule, the four years before ever releasing anCOMMITMENT TO MASTERY. idea that being successful and album. Devotion to their craft was a keyLike a master carpenter, a high- exceptional at something requires element in their success.performance developer has learned what practicing a task for at least that numberworks and what won’t, what tools to use, of hours. But beyond just reaching that “High-performance groups emerge when peopleand where efficiencies can be gained. magic number, it is having the passion, have the courage to make commitments to co-create a new and different future,” —Steve Denning It’s the same with software. Mastery is fostered in an environment where developers have had the opportunity to practice and experiment, where they’re questioned and challenged and encouraged to look for their mistakes. A team that embraces Lean methodologies is likely to have attained this level of competency because of Lean’s use of constant feedback and emphasis on continuous improvement. Software developers thrive in a culture where they are not coddled but areCollaborate. Innovate. Accelerate. Page 3
  5. 5. pushed to continually advance their emerge when people have the courage toskills, where they’re expected to thinkand analyze. In an atmosphere where make commitments to co-create a new and different future,” Denning says. Where Would the World Be Withouteveryone rejects “good enough,” where High-Performance Teamwork?everyone takes pride in what they can, developers are driven toward A high-performance team member is High-performing teams have played an organization: “The level of trust (truth,excellence. proactive and collaborative; willing to do integral role in the history and respect, understanding, support, and whatever it takes for the group to development of the human race. accountability) and shared vision (theAUTONOMY. succeed. He or she is always thinking Prehistoric tribes structured hunting goal to advance science) the membersA talented, trusted team needs the about a better way to do the work, to be parties according to the skills and of the Society achieved places them inautonomy, the freedom, to make more effective, to trim time from the talents of the group; the smallest and my high-performance team hall ofdecisions. Ownership of solutions cannot schedule, and to generously assist weakest helped to lure or flush-out fame,” says Donald J. Bodwell, whobe limited to an individual or the few colleagues whenever necessary. He or game, while the strongest wielded the writes about team concepts andpeople at the top of the hierarchy. “A she also loves the work. This results not clubs and spears. The pyramids of Egypt coaching for PT Consulting Partners,group becomes fully engaged when every just in happy employees but happy and Central America were the result of in Dallas.member becomes an owner with a sense clients. high-performance teamwork. The 300of shared responsibility and Spartans were able to hold off the More modern examples would includeaccountability for the million-strong Persian army by adroitly Ernest Shackleton’s South Pole team,accomplishment of the mission of applying the planning, communication, the Amazon explorations of Brazil’sthe group,” says Steve Denning, and rapid-response techniques of high- Cândido Rondon, the Manhattanauthor of The Leader’s Guide to performing teams. Project, and the NASA crew thatRadical Management: Re- averted disaster during the Apollo 13inventing the Workplace for Perhaps one of history’s greatest mission to the Moon.the 21st Century and examples is the original Royal Societyformer director of of London, which in the 1660s “So long as human beings remain theknowledge management at included such “teammates” as Isaac essential element of commerce, high-the World Bank. Newton and Gottfried Liebniz — and performance teams will represent man’s perfectly exemplifies some of the best hope for developing accurate, swift,“High-performance groups characteristics of such an and agile organizations,” Bodwell says.Collaborate. Innovate. Accelerate. Page 4
  6. 6. “Members of high-performance groups companies. Finding one that embodies to learn new things. A partner guided byare not only more productive: they also an affirmative, take-action spirit is a the principles of Lean IT is focused onreport on finding the work deeply strong predictor of a collaborative adding value for the client. For example,satisfying and meaningful,” Denning experience. one of the first rules of Lean is tosays. eliminate waste. As early proponent of LEAN AND INNOVATIVEOne recent study found that fewer than10% of people enjoy their job. While FRAME OF MIND. A Lean-thinking teammate exhibits a “So long as human beings remain the essentialthat might be an overstatement, there is problem-solving mentality, a tendency to element of commerce, high-performance teams willno doubt that finding a team with an bring up problems rather than sweepattitude of positivity is not easy in many them under the desk, and a natural drive represent man’s best hope for developing accurate, swift, and agile organizations.”— Donald J. Bodwell Lean IT Mary Poppendieck points out, waste can include things like unnecessary code or functions, or bureaucracy, or defects — all things that can delay a project and affect the customer. One of the most important benefits of Lean thinking is a tendency to yield innovative processes, products, and services. “Lean brings structure and predictability to innovation, and sharpens the distinction between idea generation andCollaborate. Innovate. Accelerate. Page 5
  7. 7. the development process,” according to areport from the Wharton School ofBusiness. “Both share a common goal: to 14 Principles for a High-Performance Teammeet customer needs in a cost-effectivemanner. And Lean can help empower 8. To nurture a culture of tireless identification and elimination of waste.researchers and reduce uncertainty in theinnovation process itself.” 9. To face the brutal facts bravely and bring problems to the surface.Wharton professor Kartik Hosanagar citesPixar as a company that has “combined 10. To apply adaptive planning in order to see the whole and to respond to changes promptly.Lean and innovation to good effect.”Pixar has created “a set of processes that Ci&T has developed a canon of cultural Peopleemphasizes team-based collaboration principles that have helped the company Power to the edgeand continuous feedback loops to helpovercome creative blocks and track hire and motivate talented, engaged team players. 4. To respect people by believing they can develop themselves to the full extent of their potential. 11. To make decisions the closest possible to the edge of thedeliverables, but without the stress that execution.could go with a regime of control,” he Purpose 5. To develop leaders who deeply understand the work and who are 12. To organize high-performance teams distinguished by self-says. One thing the filmmaking companydoes is conduct daily meetings where 1. To change the world by redefining the value generated by information technology for clients and for society. living examples of Ci&T’s culture and values. management, agility, innovation, and ability to members discuss what is going well— and not so well. 2. To forge a new generation of professionals stimulated by the 6. To develop long-lasting relationships with clients and partners, based on common values and value generation. 13. To learn and adapt quickly to increase the capacity to overcome“In a creative world you often hit sense of challenge and provided with the challenges.roadblocks, and team-based collaborationis critical,” Hosanagar says. “People ability to innovate and execute. 3. To perform a leading role in the Process 14. To nurture a problem-solving culture based on data analysis,might discuss work that is clearly in anincomplete stage; they don’t have to feel knowledge industry, inspiring entrepreneurship from even the most 7. To rely on discipline and standardization in the pursuit of continual improvement and consistent facts confrontation, and a team-based approach to finding solutions.embarrassed.” The point is to take the remote part of the globe., the knowledge sharing, and theCollaborate. Innovate. Accelerate. Page 6
  8. 8. lessons learned from other projects and Nearshore, value-driven custom web andkeep things moving forward. mobile application development, Trust Your Team,VISION AND SHARED PURPOSE. software product engineering, business intelligence, and SAP services to clients Like a Rock ClimberAnd finally, the characteristics of high- around the world. Established in 1995, “As a rock climber, I know that my lifeperformance teams that truly tie these Ci&T has quickly matured from an depends upon the skill and decision makingitems all together: a sense of communal outsourcing service provider to a “partnergoals and a greater, shared, purpose. player” by adopting a creative culture of my climbing partner. No matter how goodAccountability toward the mission is based on the principles of high- I am, a mistake by my partner could kill bothessential, along with a joyful willingness performance teams (see sidebar). of us. Every day I think about my teams andto commit to that mission because whenthere is also that greater purpose to work In a March 2011 report by Forrester ask if I would trust them to hold my rope. Atowards, a previously unimagined level of Research, Inc. entitled “Case Study: high-performing team requires a level ofpotential is suddenly available. Ci&T - High Performance, Brazilian trust and confidence that fosters a joy of Style,” Forrester principal analyst JeffreyENGAGEMENT, Hammond wrote: collective achievement rather than fear ofENTREPRENEURIAL individual failure.”SPIRIT IN ACTION “How do you measure the level of — John Halamka, M.D., CIO Harvard Medical School andAs software service providers have taken employee engagement at a company? In known as “the Geek Doctor”on higher-value assignments, some have our opinion, you can quickly sense thedeveloped the skills, drive, and dedication difference when you walk into anexhibited by high-performance teams. organization or talk to its people. interviewed people at Ci&T. TheOne such software company is Ci&T. Employees are focused and busy, but developers and managers we interviewed they are also happy to be there; these exude engagement...”Headquartered in Brazil and with offices environments exhibit a high level ofin the U.S., Europe, and Japan, and collaboration and cheerful interaction One Ci&T employee who perfectlydelivery centers in Brazil, Argentina and between employees and managers. We exemplifies the results of this kind ofChina, Ci&T employs agile methodologies saw all these signs of engagement on workplace atmosphere is Marcio Cyrillo.and Lean principles to provide multiple occasions when we have He began in the company’s testingCollaborate. Innovate. Accelerate. Page 7
  9. 9. department in 1999, but now is the headof mobile strategy from his office in NewYork City. The company awarded him a It Starts at The Top“Star Talent” accolade for the things he A high-performance team is a reflectionaccomplished during his time in New York. of a company’s leaders. Just as the team has certain attributes, so too do theACCELERATED DEVELOPMENT people guiding that team.Another example of Ci&T’s agility andresponsiveness to customer needs is its “In every case that has been studied atnew service offering, called Accelerate. the Europe-based Centre forThe goal is to help small and large Organisational Research, teams thatcompanies, in a landscape of disruptive ‘click’ always have a leader who createstechnologies, turn their ideas into the environment and establishes theproducts — quickly. Leonardo Mattiazzi, operating principles and values that arevice president of International Business, conducive to high performance,” sayssays Accelerate helps businesses “ideate, Phil Harkin, CEO of Linkage Inc., co-create, and iterate.” Ci&T’s use of agile chair of the Global Institute formethodologies, Lean principles, and a Leadership Development, and author offast feedback loop enables clients to several books on leadership coaching. those goals. When the team runs into difficultdevelop products “ahead of schedule and Harkin says these types of people exhibit situations, as is inevitable, the high-with minimal cash burn,” continues four key behaviors: • They use language “to build trust, performance leader will help them focusMattiazzi. encourage forward-thinking, and create on the future and “move back to the • They define clear goals and a “vision of energy within the team; Harkin calls present” with reminders to “keep our eyeOne of the first customers to benefit from the future in accordance with overall these “powerful creations.” on the ball” and “remember ourthe Accelerate offering was Carousl Labs, organizational aims (‘the big picture’).” objectives.” They also aren’t afraid towhich was later acquired by NewBlueInc, the maker of the Vibop iPhone app. • They get the right people involved, the “talk about things — even the hard • They develop blueprints to achieve “passionate champions.” things.”Co-Founder of Carousl Labs, Guto Araujohas worked with Ci&T on severalCollaborate. Innovate. Accelerate. Page 8
  10. 10. development projects with different architecture choices for the product That enthusiasm was exhibited by theorganizations and says: design and, ultimately, on its value Ci&T staff’s eagerness to get the project proposition to end users. They off the ground, and in the right direction,“The Ci&T team partnered with us in understood our business objectives, our together with the startup founders.shaping our product, an iPhone app and customers, and product goals and were Referring to the aforementioned Marciocloud service for group photo and video always very collaborative, challenging ussharing. As a startup, we came to themwith a product vision, strategy and and adding to our thinking. It was great to see that they shared our enthusiasm They understood our business objectives, ourdesigns. They listened closely; we had and passion for working on an innovative customers, and product goals and were always verymany interesting and intense discussions project, which had a very positive impactabout the impact of technology and on the end product.” collaborative, challenging us and adding to our thinking. —Guto Araujo Cyrillo, Araujo recalls: “We had quality discussions over e-mail, phone and Skype discussing the product strategy and best ways to deliver a differentiated product and I did not get a bill for that time. Instead, Marcio and Felipe Rubim, Ci&T’s Chief Technology Architect, were interested in having those planning discussions to make sure we were going in the right direction.” IDEA GENERATOR When Coca-Cola Brazil decided it needed new and better mobile apps to reachCollaborate. Innovate. Accelerate. Page 9
  11. 11. teenage consumers, the beverage to bring IT thinking to the idea- variable code quality, and difficulty very important for us to find a partnercompany turned to Ci&T not just for development process, and it made a huge responding to scope changes or requests who shared our lean startup principles,development but for ideas. “All of the difference.” to refactor existing projects.” and could respond quickly with minimummobile initiatives Coca-Cola had in Brazil overhead”had been SMS, which is a reflection of HIGH-PERFORMANCE Guto Araujo, Co-Founder of Carousl Labs,the market, but at the end of last year PARTNERSHIP describes what he considers when looking Araujo found that partner in the team atCoca-Cola challenged us to come up with Consider this advice from Forrester for for a team: “As a technology startup, we Ci&T. “We were happy to develop thatsome ideas for mobile, with a tight selecting a development team: “Take a needed a development partner who would kind of partnership with Ci&T. We sharedtimeline and a restricted budget,” Paulo good look at its culture and assess listen and engage in an intelligent that DNA and were able to move fast as aCamara, head of mobile operations at whether you see engaged developers or a conversation to understand what we were team to achieve our objectives.” AraujoCi&T in Campinas, Brazil, told Mobile revolving door ‘death march.’ If it’s the trying to do and add value to the product says.Marketer. latter, be prepared for rising costs, and technology discussions. It was alsoOne of the ideas Ci&T came back withwas a mobile game: Sprite City, for the This E-Book is Sponsored by Ci&T Brought To You By: Nearshore AmericasiPad (40,000 downloads in two months).Even more popular is the Coke DrinkiPhone app which has achieved over2,000,000 downloads making it Coca- Ci&T ( provides value-driven, Nearshore web About Nearshore Americas: Nearshore Americas is anCola’s most downloaded app. and mobile application services and software product independent online news provider dedicated to expanding engineering. The companys high-performance teams employ knowledge on the fast-growing global services/ BPO market in“We use our own Web sites to let agile methodologies and Lean principles to deliver innovative, the world – Latin America. As one of the world’s leadingconsumers know about [our mobile] value-generating projects for companies of all sizes, by resources on offshore outsourcing, Nearshore Americas isinitiatives, but using [paid] media to drive leveraging the latest mobile, cloud and web technologies. A committed to providing high quality information and data forconsumers to those apps is something truly global company established in 1995, Ci&T is business and IT leaders in the U.S. and around the World.we’ll start investigating more going headquartered in Campinas, Brazil, with strategic locations Nearshore Americas - based in New York City - is published byforward,” said Adriana Knackfuss, senior across Latin America, North America, Europe and the Asia- Next Coast Media. Visit Nearshore Americas to sign up for a freemanager of consumer connections at Pacific region. For more information, visit newsletter, and get connected to the brand through Facebook,Coca-Cola in Brazil. “Ci&T challenged us Twitter, and LinkedIn.Collaborate. Innovate. Accelerate. Page 10