A Guide to Scaling Software Development Teams

  • aasheem
  • January 5th, 2022

Scaling software development teams is complicated. There are many ways to go about it, and no two companies will approach the process the same way. Here are some of the most common issues that may arise when scaling a software development company.  

What are the Most Common Challenges When Scaling Software Development Teams?  

When scaling a business, it is essential to have someone in charge of project management or product management to overview the whole process. This person should be responsible for making sure they can handle all the challenges. It means that all departments comply with deadlines, budgets, milestones, etc., and monitor any changes that might affect those deadlines or budgets moving forward.   

In the following, some examples introduce common challenges when scaling software development teams:  

  • Manage Distributed Teams  
  • Project Management 
  • Keeping Up Productivity and Quality 
  • Architectural Planning 
  • CI/CD and Scalability  
  • Prepare the Code for Scaling 


The challenge of scaling development teams is that the size of the team needs to be increased in sync when the project grows. This increase has many difficulties for employers, as they need to ensure that every new developer has all the skill sets required for their roles.  

The problem is compounded when teams are diverse because now, each person needs to contribute and work with every other person on the team.  

Build Powerful Software Development Teams  

There are three common types of structures for development teams:  

  • Generalist  
  • Specialist   
  • Hybrid Team  


Each of these teams may perform excellently in one project and have problems in another. Development teams must consider factors such as complexity, time constraints, and budget not to fail. Then decisions on which structure is best based on these factors. In general, we can build the development teams in several ways.  

For example, the Egoless development team and the Chief Programmer Team are two other structures that are commonly used. In the following, first, the influential factors in choosing the structure of the programming team are discussed, and then each of these two types of common structures is briefly described.  

What are the Effective Factors in Building the Structure?  

The influential factors in building the structural type of development teams in a particular project are as follows:   

  • Project difficulty level (complexity)   
  • Project size   
  • Project duration   
  • The modularity of the project   
  • Reliability   
  • Other cases  

What about outsourcing your development team? 

Outsourcing software development is the act of hiring an external organization to create software for you. There are many reasons for outsourcing, but some have access to talent outside your country, higher quality software at lower cost, and time zone difference, to give a few examples.  

Consider these 8 tips for outsourcing to increase the chances of a successful project:  

  1. Determine your needs  
  1. Find a reliable and experienced partner  
  1. Get it in writing  
  1. Explore cultural differences  
  1. Be open-minded  
  1. Simplify your requirements  
  1. Start small and ramp-up  
  1. Lean on experts in the field  

Choose the Best Developers for Your Project  

Many qualities make a developer ideal for a project. Some of the qualities would include their attention to detail, commitment to meeting deadlines, and ability to work well on a team.  

The skills required for each developer will vary depending on the job they are hired for; some developers may be more skilled in coding and machine learning, while others may be more skilled in web design and graphic design. The developer must be competent in whichever skill set they are hired for to provide quality work.  


If you have any related questions about building and scaling software development teams, please do not hesitate to ask.  

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