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Scaling Our Engineering Department (part 2)

Techsummit by leaseweb in Berlin, 13.4.2016 at Kulturbrauerei. Copyright Raum11/Jan Zappner

This is the second part in a 2-part series. Read part 1.

In my last post I gave an overview of how we started the process of changing the way we do agile development at LeaseWeb by setting goals, engaging our engineering teams, and developing a maturity model to get everyone working to the same standard. In this post I’m going to talk about how we set up our scrum teams, how we get all levels of the business involved in the development process, and how we calculate the cost to provide the most value for the company.

Our current Scrum teams are set up as follows:

  • Product Owner – defines the priorities of the team; responsible for the order in which features are built.
  • Scrum Master – in charge of the scrum process (coach): making sure the team does retrospectives, sprint planning, refinement, coordinating meetings.
  • DevOps – Development and Operations in one team of about 5-8 people.

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Scaling our engineering departments (part 1)

AdServing_01_FlexibilityIn this blog post I’m going to cover how we are scaling our engineering department at LeaseWeb: where we started, the lessons we’ve learned, and how we are hoping to move forward. LeaseWeb was founded in 1997 and we currently have over 350 employees throughout the world with the majority working at our headquarters in Amsterdam. The engineering department currently has about 100 employees and manages 65,000 servers in seven locations (with more to be added soon).

In the past development was based on shifting priorities rather than planned business cases. Developers weren’t able to concentrate their efforts on thoroughly building, testing, documenting, and presenting a demo for one project before another more urgent one was moved to the head of the line. Operations and Development were working on different schedules and weren’t able to meet each other’s requirements to their mutual satisfaction. We wanted to change this.

Read the rest of this entry »

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