Talent management and professional development paramount to success

In building unique software, Tiempo talent management and professional development are paramount to our clients’ success

In talking with Tiempo Development employees and people who know how businesses work, we often hear that we provide far more training, mentoring, and career development than is common in our industry. Word-of-mouth and surveys tell us that our work environment is more collaborative and collegial, encourages more participation, and considers individual needs more than is customary in many businesses. A 2013 workplace satisfaction survey by SG Buzz, the online resource of Software Guru, the leading forum for Latin American software professionals, placed Tiempo Development in the ninth position in a round-up of the 20 best companies to work for—in a league with industry giants like Microsoft, Intel, Oracle, and HP.

Why should this matter to clients? Because our professional development and talent management translate directly into the quality of the unique, specialized software we build in our nearshore development, as well as the velocity of the process.

Client-connected talent delivers the goods

Given the nature of our work and our company’s working culture, the accomplishments and abilities of our people have a very high level of visibility. We are unusual in the industry because our program managers, tech leads, and software engineers work directly with client stakeholders and IT groups. Collaborative relationships between professionals in the client’s and the Tiempo organization are critical in performing successful, fast-moving nearshore development engagements. Many other technology firms, both nearshore and offshore companies, mediate their work through account or project managers and business analysts. Sometimes that may be necessary to overcome differences in time zones, geographical distance, or gaps in language and cultural familiarity. That is not an issue at Tiempo—our development centers are in time zones that are the same or close to those of our clients in North America. In a somewhat unusual, current engagement, the entire Tiempo team even works at the client’s location—definitely not a common practice in the industry.

What’s more, in our recruiting, hiring, and professional development, we naturally look for technical expertise and qualifications, but cultural affinity and language ability are just as important. For the close to 1,000 candidates we interview every month as we build our talent pool and ensure staffing for the many development projects we perform, the prospect of direct client relationships and being closely connected to clients’ innovative business models while working with leading-edge technologies is extremely exciting.

Progressive, individualized talent development

Once people join Tiempo, no matter in what position, they have regular meetings with their managers to define and evolve their growth development plan, updating goals and achievements regularly every three months. The wider perspective and overriding goals are three years out, so people decide where they want to be by then and set up an action plan that includes skills to grow and training to consume. Managers’ tasks include identifying necessary resources, removing obstacles, helping employees see beyond the day-to-day, and assisting them in becoming effective and comfortable in roles they may have recently stepped into.

We also find it important not to keep people confined to roles they might outgrow—for example, software engineers can move into program management or solution architect roles depending on their ambition and track record. But we also know that many software engineers are most interested in mastering the tools and practices that let them build ever more innovative and powerful software, and for that reason Tiempo offers a career path for software engineering roles as well.

Building values-based community

People from outside the company often comment on the high level of enthusiasm at Tiempo. One reason for that is that we live our values very practically in a way I have not seen anywhere else. Every month, Tiempo employees focus practically on one of six key values, which are Delighting the Customer, People, Resilience, Collaboration, Integrity, and Discipline.

We also build a strong community within the workplace and seek out opportunities to contribute to the communities where our development centers are. This is especially appreciated by the many employees who come from outside of Guadalajara, Monterrey, and Hermosillo.

Evolving the client-focused organization

Recently, we rolled out an initiative called Tiempo 2.0 to all employees in our three development centers and at headquarters. Tiempo 2.0 commits all of us even more strongly to the path for individual and organizational achievement that we’ve taken throughout the life of the business. Mastery, autonomy, and purpose are critical in Tiempo 2.0, and a MAP task force will help us translate them into our jobs. As a result of this initiative, we will see a stronger alignment of our key values with our business goals, our work environment, and the way we find and foster the best talent in our industry.

For 2015, we are also planning to continue making enhancements to our talent and career development practice that will make use of recent research and industry-best practices for fast-moving businesses. For Tiempo employees, those changes will expand the horizon of what is possible for them. For our clients, they will mean working with even more enthusiastic and capable people on their Tiempo team.

If you want to discuss your business or find out more about the way we work, please drop me a line at mgotes@tiempodev.com, or connect with Tiempo Development at contact@tiempodev.com. You might also find our case studies and other services interesting.

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