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Co-located teams versus Remote teams, Key Considerations by Giff Constable Content as Culture, by Jotto

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Not all kinds of communication have the same effectiveness. A study by Alastair Cockburn in 2001 clearly illustrates the importance of communication by two people at a white board. This is the most effective communication compared to writing a message on a piece of paper. However, we know that this is not a possibility in today’s IT projects. One communication tool in agile that can be utilized in all types of projects is called an information radiator. Colocation is useful for meetings that require close listening, such as design discussions.

  • Frankly it is better to have a fully distributed team of A players than a co-located team with B players, who will demotivate the As and ultimately cause them to leave.
  • Trust is the essential ingredient for high-performing teams.
  • Two advantages of distributed development teams are flexibility and coverage.
  • In the memo, the company stated “to become the absolute best place to work, communication and collaboration will be important, so we need to be working side-by-side.
  • They decided to open an offshore development center with their own team of engineers in Eastern Europe.

Although we are all remote, because of these planned meetings, we do not feel that disconnected from each other. Effective communication, like productivity metrics, must be established, agreed upon and documented when beginning any project. Failure in team communication and misalignment can occur when people sit next to each other in a shared space. Like security, working with virtual teams obliges us to add discipline in our projects. If there are no network issues, virtual teams communicate with the same immediacy as co-located teams, and often it is easier to Slack someone than get up from your desk and walk across a room.

It goes without saying that successful performance is possible only when there is mutual trust and respect between the team members. One of the ways to develop these traits is to assign projects with shared responsibilities that presuppose regular meetings. Such frequent interactions will not only deepen developers’ professional knowledge and skills, but also contribute to their understanding of each other’s strengths and weaknesses. So how can we invent a future work environment where we get the best of co-location and virtual teams?

Satellite Agile team

With time we discovered that we all were interested in crypto, hiking, skiing, some of us in mountaineering, and some of us in psychology. We started spending some evenings or even weekend days together, some guys even went with each other on vacation for a week. A good ERP system helps to combine all information and communication methods more efficiently.

Why are things easier for co-located teams

Trust is the essential ingredient for high-performing teams. To build up trust, teams need transparent and open communication and strong bonds. The more people you add to the team, the more they need to communicate with each other. However, a good team space doesn’t automatically mean you have a high-performing team. It only provides opportunities for open communication, trust, and knowledge sharing.

How and Why a Co-Located Team Can Work

The spatial distance can be overcome with the right tools and coordination, especially when supported by the broader organization. And some sort of synchronous interaction is needed for overcoming both social and temporal distance. This study took a look at leadership in partially distributed teams, analyzing the different dimensions of distance such as geographic, cultural, and temporal. There have been a number of studies that have taken a look at co-located and remote teams. While there could still be significant research done in this area , there has been quite a bit written and there are some key points we can glean from these studies.

Why are things easier for co-located teams

It is intended to give teams the environment they need. A team also needs solutions that support asynchronous communication. However, you should never forget that there might be people who would prefer to work remotely. Be open and transparent about your “why” and involve the employees in the decision-making process, motivating and strengthening the engagement. Co-located teams need time and space to understand the visions and align on goals.

This was a very interesting idea, although I am not sure if they pursued it. More and more, project teams are faced with teams scattered around the globe. Team members are of various nationalities, which https://globalcloudteam.com/ puts communication to the ultimate test. Team members who spend more time and effort on communication generate better results. Team space, size, selection, and participation is all about communication.

Researchers have found that six plus/minus two people is the sweet spot where the necessary amount of communication has the best outcome for the team. If the number of people is higher than ten, the team’s time to invest in communication is much more than the outcome of adding more people to the team. Having a team space is a good choice to benefit from these advantages.

How to get hired through LinkedIn? 5 Known Facts.

Our second team is large commercial interest in the Southeast United States. As part of a new product initiative, they were bringing together several teams they had acquired into one larger team-­‐of-­‐teams that would be in one location. Because the teams were still in flux and not everybody could attend in person, there was a need for a task tracking tool that could serve as a backup to the physical storyboards.

It has literally written abook about the subject as well. For those unfamiliar with the company, it allows a user to easily connect apps together to automate processes or accomplish any number of tasks. It essentially allows non-developers to accomplish development tasks that wouldn’t have been achievable before. Automattic is the company behind WordPress, a popular content management system and site builder that is behind many websites on the internet. Automattic now has hundreds of employees across more than 60 countries. Most studies I reviewed showed that there are hurdles to remote/distributed teams.

Why are things easier for co-located teams

Not all of them were present on that meeting, so some of them didn’t understand why they had to switch to it. We soon reverted to the old ways of doing things, because it was much easier. Remote team members of a satellite agile team.In Slovakia, we felt a little left out. Yes, people were nice and we did good work, but there was something lacking. When you are distributed, you are essentially in silos.

Will virtual team become the norm and co-location only happen by accident? Does a virtual team add value in addition to being a normal team, only spread out geographically? Is there something special about face-to-face collaboration that cannot be replicated online?


It not only takes months of effort and expense to hire someone, but it can be harder to keep them as well. Your decision about single-site might hinge on the depth of your talent network. Some studies have claimed that as team-member physical proximity increases, the frequency and quality of communication increases, resulting in better team performance. More recent studies have found that there is no effect of team-member proximity on team performance.

Why are things easier for co-located teams

Vitality Chicago provides the Agile Training, Scrum Certification, and Agile Coaching that organizations need to increase business agility. Our Agile Training courses help teams boost productivity, optimize their development process, and deliver better customer solutions. Our Trainers and Coaches have the deep expertise to help you at all points of your agile transformation journey. As an Agile Coach, I’ve been an advocate for co-located teams for the last 10 years.

Test Management Services

To get the maximum benefits from outsourcing and outstaffing solutions, it’s crucial to partner with a reliable services provider. We’ve partnered with 40+ companies around the globe, among them being a Canada-based social media management agency ICUC and a Swiss InsurTech company esurance. YouTube videos allow people to join who are not present , but they also allow re-­‐showing the demo to those who couldn’t make it. Product Owners inside a client organization can share how things are going with their managers at the manager’s convenience.

Co-located teams versus Remote teams, Key Considerations

The rise of tech companies brought along with it many trends in office design and office perks that were meant to make the environment more fun and collaborative. However, many of these trends have simply turned out to be distractions. Like I mentioned in my first comment, people have signed up to work for Tridaz with the premise that they want to work remotely, because it fits their lifestyle. There was one thing that was diminishing this synergy effect.

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In-person workshops and meetings with hands-on methods, like using canvases and sticky notes, foster creative thinking and open discussions. Additionally, you can bring visuals to the team space or office and stick them on the walls so that everyone will remember them every day. No one can “hide” behind a “bad internet connection” or turn off their camera. On the one hand, you want to encourage communication and interaction between team members, but, on the other hand, you need to make sure that there are not too many people on the team. Otherwise, people will either spend more time communicating instead of being productive or stop trying to communicate because it consumes too much energy and time.

This allows the team to rely on face-to-face communication and enables two other forms of information sharing. Also, keep security implications in mind when selecting a tool because employees will likely be discussing or displaying proprietary information. It’s essential that the selected tool contains sufficient security, and that the security used is properly configured. Thoughts on team alignment and productive work culture. In this post, we’re going to cover pros and cons to 4 different models of work.

The Most Crucial Thing About Scrum

With almost no barriers to communication, agility can flourish. Advocates of co-located teams would argue that individuals are how to build culture in a remote team able to selectively tune in and tune out of those conversations. And in doing so, the overall knowledge of the team increases.

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