As we grow,
Voalte faces a common challenge: how to expand an already impressive
engineering team quickly, without sacrificing quality.
some of the most talented software engineers in the industry by opening our
search to people from all over the world … and letting them stay right where
they are. As a result, we have engineers in Florida, New York and Seattle, as
well as Uruguay, Vietnam, Romania and Spain.
joined Voalte as V.P. of Engineering, I realized that our choices of less
common programming languages and new, in-demand technology like iOS meant the
number of people who can do that work is relatively small. I also knew that
while we might be able to attract a full staff with the correct skill set in
New York City or Silicon Valley, that wasn’t going to be possible here in
Sarasota, Florida. By finding the most talented, highly educated people who are
passionate about this technology and letting them work from home, the entire
world suddenly opened up to us.
is a hot topic recently, thanks to Yahoo
CEO Marissa Mayer announcing an end to the company’s work-at-home policy
. Here’s how
we make it work at Voalte.
work remotely most of the time, because my family and I live in Orlando, and
the Voalte office is a 2-hour drive away in Sarasota. In my experience, attaching
a few remote workers to a mostly on-site team is a recipe for failure. Instead,
all members of our team communicate the same way, whether one desk away at our
home office or 3,000 miles away in Barcelona. With me working as a remote
executive, we all have to walk the walk, at every level of the group.
collaboration tools have improved greatly in the past few years. With our
engineers spread across the globe, remote tools such as Google Hangouts
have become our default methods of
communication. We can get 15 people into a real-time video chat, with great
picture quality and the ability for people to come in and out of the discussion
at their leisure. Our engineers meet in daily morning Hangouts, and every
Friday afternoon we host an engineering forum, where someone presents a topic
or proposes an item for discussion. All day, every day, we use HipChat as a critical
command center for most conversations.
bring everyone together face-to-face on occasion to extend the relationships that
make it easier to work together remotely. Twice a year, all of our engineers
from around the world gather at an engineering summit in Sarasota.
It takes a
certain attitude and personality type to work from home. Fortunately, computer
programmers tend to be well-suited to telecommuting since they are comfortable
communicating online. For Voalte, the payoff is in attracting world-class
engineering talent that translates into world-class products.