Working with a nearshore IT team is an interesting option for many companies. The excellent training and quality-oriented ambitions of – potential – employees are some of the main factors in the spectacular advance of nearshoring. But what does it take to successfully set up a nearshore team? In this blog, Bas Geurtsen, Delivery Manager at BPM Company, explains the benefits of working with a nearshore team, and how to achieve optimal cooperation and results.
More development capacity
More and more companies are now considering working with a nearshore IT team. Common arguments for this are the supply of IT talent, the flexibility and the affordable costs of employees. Which means you have more development capacity for the same money. With a nearshore construction, part of your team is abroad, but within Europe. Because your team is not too far away, you do not have much of a time difference, you travel there with relatively little time, and you do not have the problem of the cultural differences being to big.
Ensure a good team spirit and mutual trust
Because of the distance, the contact mainly takes place through email, chat, telephone and video calling. That contact is mainly for business purposes. Because of this there’s no chatting at the coffee machine or a meeting in the corridors, however these informal contacts are essential for good cooperation in a team. Creating mutual trust and good team spirit is therefore an extra challenge when working with a nearshore team, but with the right attention, it will work.
Start with a solid foundation
At the moment I am leading, for BPM Company, a nearshore team for a large Dutch financial institution. When we started this team, the colleagues spent six weeks in the Netherlands. In those six weeks we discussed all important elements of the project through and through, but also worked on mutual relationships. Building trust is very important to be able to work together efficiently. If things are not going well, if there are disagreements or if someone does not feel happy with a certain course of affairs, that trust is necessary to start a conversation with each other. This is the only way to get to a point where everybody is on the same page.
Maintain your relationship
When you have just started as a team, it is important to offer a lot of guidance. You can let go of that bit by bit over time, but relationships always require maintenance. Now that the team is in good shape, I fly up and down once a month to meet and support the team in whatever area is needed. The other team members stationed in the Netherlands meet for a week with their foreign colleagues on a quarterly basis. In that week we look ahead to what is to come and we discuss current matters. But these weeks are also mainly about doing things together and getting to know each other outside work. This way we maintain the mutual relationship, so that the contact at a distance also runs smoothly.
Nearshoring brings many advantages such as cost reduction, quality and flexibility. This while the differences in working hours, (company) culture, language, politics and legislation are less significant than when offshoring to another continent. In order to have a successful and productive nearshore IT team, it is essential to ensure the right balance in the team and to provide good guidance. It is important to spend enough time together and to invest in mutual relationships. Everything depends on trust.
Curious what a nearshore construction can mean for your company? Feel free to contact us. We like to think along with you.