Software Development Culture: How to Keep it with Remote Work

How to create a software development culture that delivers in a remote/hybrid future
Written by


I think we can all agree that successful software delivery is dependent on a blend of technical skill sets, processes, and the creation of a software development culture that remains strong, even among your remote software development team.

Now, gaining access to the required technical skills to deliver on a project in this current market is difficult but can be achieved. Likewise, processes are easy to talk about, but hard to implement, but again can be achieved. The often overlooked, bass guitarist in this situation is the development of a company culture across and within your software development team

Lockdowns are hopefully over for good, but it's not news that remote and hybrid will remain in-demand for software engineers and developers. Speaking to businesses we've seen candidates asking for higher salaries if they are expected to go into the office.

In a remote/hybrid world, maintaining a culture than is focused on delivery is much harder than before. Whilst software engineering was once was a role that required many long hours spent in isolation, it has drastically changed with the increase in demand and today, a more supportive culture is sought after.

Here are some tips for managing culture in remote teams.

Schedule ‘Water-Cooler’ Chats

Although it might sound odd, these mini breaks and social interactions are just as important for remote working teams. In fact, they’re probably even more important than anyone ever gave them credit for.

The software industry is pretty demanding, and it can still be isolating at times, as developers spend most of their time behind a screen, ensconced in code. Which means they often don’t think beyond what they’re doing in that moment. So although these ‘water-cooler’ chats have to be scheduled (which, we admit, does take away the spontaneity somewhat), they do allow developers to share knowledge, take a screen break and maintain social interactions. Which are all critical to a happy and united team who achieve their goals together. We’ve made interactions like this an important aspect of how we work together at Synetec, so that we’re in the best place to guarantee delivery for our clients. Maintaining a healthy culture among software developers and other team members will ultimately have a better outcome in terms of engagement, collaboration, development and positivity, which will reflect in the team’s work.

Celebrate Success

Keeping remote workers happy is different; it's crucial you're structured in your praise. Set clear objectives and goals and be organised when the team exceed expectation. Praise the team members when they execute tasks successfully. It has been shown that this will encourage other teams and team members to strive for that approbation.

So when a developer has done an exceptional piece of work for a client, you could ask them to do a mini presentation to demonstrate what they did well and why the client was so happy.  

Or, if they’ve qualified for a certification, you could ask them to share what preparation they did or to explain how they managed to plan in all the learning whilst juggling the day job. This formal feedback process not only gives developers a boost, but inspires their teammates too.

Equip Yours Teams to Succeed

If you haven’t got the equipment right yet, after two years of living in a pandemic, we’re sorry to say but you’ve made things hard for yourself. Experience has shown the benefit of making sure that your teams get to give their opinions on what they need for effective remote work. Spoiler alert: It will be more than just a laptop. It may be a whole host of hardware, software and ergonomic aides that help them replicate the office experience.  

For example, software developers tend to use two at least monitors in an office environment. So that you can help them with productivity at home, you’d benefit from offering them two monitors there as well.  

Learning Sessions

It’s also crucial to implement ‘learning sessions’ to get teams into the habit of receiving feedback. We would always recommend sharing customer feedback with your teams, whether it’s good or bad. If feedback is negative, you can explore what to do about it and if it’s excellent, you can highlight what went well and give everyone credit for a job well done. Either way, being primed to take on board feedback will help your team succeed.

Ensuring Delivery whilst Building Internal Capability

If culture falls to the wayside for remote and hybrid teams, then you run the risk of your team members leaving. This can disrupt your team, delay delivery and cost you significant time and money trying to re-hire, especially in today’s environment where technical talent is in short supply.

Building internal capability and instilling the company culture in team members takes time. If you’re thinking whether the pros outweigh the cons, imagine if you could work on your internal resource whilst also ensuring delivery in the short term.  

Our customers have found that working with a development partner like Synetec keeps their cadence and velocity up whilst they build internal capability and train the team. You can get support from a partner to help you in the short-term so that you can focus on what needs to happen to build your empire. It’s not an either or situation, as you can see from this TerraQuest case study.

We’ve been able to maintain a 100% on time, on budget delivery rate since 2019, and a critical part of that is the way we recruit and manage our team.

If you want to ensure delivery now whilst building your internal team, book a call with one of our senior technologist to get a plan on how to meet your goals.

Speak to a Software Development Specialist

If you would like to discuss a bespoke software development project, challenge or goal please book a 30 minute Clarity Call with us and we'll point you in the right direction (even if you chose not to work with us)

Synetec Logo

Free Guide: How to Hire Developers (and keep them)

If you develop software and are having to prioritise business as usual over innovation because you can’t find the resources to balance both, this guide was written for YOU.

Synetec Logo

Other Featured Articles

Cookie Settings
By using this website, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyse site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts. View our Privacy Policy for more information.