The Paradox of Balanced Teams: When Less Average Experience is Better

The Russian software development outsourcing industry is known for its ability to deal with complex and unique software development projects.I, for one, like to quote Steven Chase, the President of Intel/Russia:

“If you have something tough, give it to the Americans. If you have something difficult, give it to the Indians. If you have something impossible, give it to the Russians.”

So it comes as no surprise that we, as a software R&D services provider with development centers in Russia, are regularly contacted by potential clients who say, “Build me an elite team of senior professionals to work on our product.”
And then I have to go and convince them to avoid going down that road and to build a balanced team consisting of comparable numbers of senior, standard, and junior engineers instead.

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“All I Need Is Engineers”: Why This Approach Fails For Offshore Software Development

I’ve been working in the offshore software development industry for about 15 years, dealing with our current and potential clients and the proposals we create for them on a daily basis. Every week or so, I face some prospective client who says, “I want to put together an offshore engineering team. But don’t put a manager on your side; I will not pay for that. All I need is engineers. My team leaders will manage them directly.” Continue reading

Software Development Outsourcing – Higher Than the Clouds

In this century of continuous technological development and integration into the business environment, many companies are facing more complex tasks than they used to.

Primarily, we discuss here situations in which a company needs to create a new product or component or a solution for an area in which the company lacks expertise. Providing product support after creation is another challenge directly related to that mentioned above. Continue reading

Auriga Has Developed the First MS Project-based Mobile Application for Project Escalations

Every project manager knows that one of the dreariest tasks in a project is the constant control and problem management. An experienced PM applies his skills and experience to organize the control process, keeping in mind the major milestones and indicators of the project, but even experienced PMs cannot respond quickly while out of the office.

Some control freaks visit their project servers while on vacation at the Goa Beach or Mount Everest, but the fact is that there are few such freaks among project managers. Consequently, the mere mortals must either come to terms with the need to sift through the mountains of tickets after the holiday or trust the technology designed to solve such problems.

Recently, Auriga engineers developed a mobile client for project monitoring web-services based on MS Project Server. In accordance with complex business logic, the application collects information from various project management systems and, if a problem occurs, sends a notification to the manager’s smartphone or tablet. The push-notification service shows the number of open escalations in the corner of the widget icon of the phone or tablet desktop. At the same time, it’s not just a pure notification service; it’s also a tool that allows managers to work with escalations instantly: for example, to send an SMS or call back the responsible person. The solution includes the following functionality:

  • Ÿ Displays a list of escalations in the application
  • Ÿ Ability to close the escalation in the application
  • Ÿ Provides user authorization and authentication
  • Ÿ Calls/SMSs to employees responsible for the escalation
  • Ÿ Sorts escalations based on several parameters (date, customer, type of escalation)
  • Ÿ Integration with web-services notifications (e.g., if established deadlines, costs, budgets, or working hours are exceeded)
  • Ÿ Apple push-notification service
  • Ÿ Displays detailed information within the application without using a web-portal

The client is developed using complex business logic of the project compliance with the state of critical points (triggers). It is optimized for MS SQL database and MS Project Server. At present, the application is available for two main mobile platforms: iOS and Android. The next-step modifications of the solution include:

  • Business logic algorithms customization, based on project triggers list expansion
  • Cross-platform support for other mobile platforms
  • Synchronization with other project servers or databases

Alexander Videnev, Auriga Business Development Director:

I am sure that our application has a bright future in the market. At present, there are many applications for project management, and the mobile segment of these solutions is very active. I mean, the share of mobile devices is growing very fast. However, our analysis revealed that really simple and effective solutions that allow users to obtain timely information about projects, to contact the project manager promptly, and to get comprehensive first-hand information about the project are quite rare. However, regarding such applications for Microsoft Project Server, I can assure you that we are pioneers: Our mobile monitoring application is the only one on the current market.