is what I heard during a conversation today. Do you think so? To substantiate, I was told that Mid to Smaller size IT Services / Consultancy or Startup accelerators should not aim at superior engineering instead do just what is needed to sail over.

Mid to Smaller size IT Services / Consultancy or Startup accelerators should not aim at superior engineering instead do just what is needed to sail over.

Well!! I beg to differ. I understand that you can’t set goals in engineering quality excellence and achieve it. This is because of constant change in the technology and other related areas which makes excellence a moving goal post. But that doesn’t mean that you shy away from it. It is imperative to devise a plan and find a way to achieve it. Like they say, more than achieving the goal of excellence, the journey is more important. The very fact that someone is thinking about will set the rest of stakeholders thinking about excellence. Also, it doesn’t just mean that you are writing the best code ever written and claim to be excellent, but the whole process.

Like they say, more than achieving the goal of excellence, the journey is more important.

IT Services industry has gone through some dramatic changes with the advent of Cloud, DevOps and other automation-related technologies. These new-age technologies have led to the birth of numerous Mid to Small IT Services / Consulting companies. Clients now are at liberty to choose a player with specific skills & expertise to address a specific business case unlike before where one IT giant will deliver all the services. This has rationalized the whole IT services market which has led to so many IT professionals who came to industry around the mid 90s becoming entrepreneurs. It all starts with the entrepreneur’s own area expertise. It could be a specific programming language like C++, Java or tools like SAP, Salesforce or domain like Finance, Retail. They will start small with 5 to 10 FTE (Full Time Employees) and then quickly grow to 100 to 200.

Clients now are at liberty to choose a player with specific skills & expertise to address a specific business case unlike before where one IT gaint will deliver all the services.

Eventually, some of these companies can reach nearly 1000 FTEs based on their ability to attract multiple clients. Just when the entrepreneur thinks he can breathe easy, it all starts. They will have to start expanding to other areas, beyond what is perceived to be the area of expertise, to sustain. Also, they need to constantly refine & rejuvenate their processes around project management as well as delivery to stay relevant. Even if there is a turnover of talent which is very obvious, the quality of engineering will have to be maintained. It is easier said than done.

Please don't reduce it to just a group that defines coding standards and uploads it to internal code storage or team portal.

To start with it needs to be recognized as important enough. Again, need to understand that it is an ongoing exercise and not one-off. There should be a CoE (Center of Excellence) for each technology area or domain. Please don’t reduce it to just a group that defines coding standards and uploads it to internal code storage or team portal. Set up a review of all the engineering work delivered and make sure to compare it with the benchmark. It is about questioning every line of code and checking if there is a better way to do it. All these need to happen in a friendly environment and not the way. Encourage people to start contributing to OpenSource projects, one of the ways to stay relevant to coding practices. Reward & recognize those who take an active role in these activities. For all these, you need to have a mindset. It doesn’t happen all by itself you will have to make an effort.

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