Training for GSD

Pattern Attributes

Intervention Management
Domain NA
Work Programme PAISEAN
Research Area GSD
Evidence Type Multiple case study, Lit. review
Evidence Source Multi-nationals, SMEs, individuals, literature
Evidence Strength Very strong
Trigger doing_gsd == true

Problem

Specific competencies are required by teams who are working in a Global Software Development environment. Without these, the projects are likely to fail - be that totally, or in part, for example, by missing deadlines, costing higher than expected, or missing requirements.

Example

There is very little concentration on… what I want to refer to as the soft factors… so understanding lets say cultural differences… very little organized training is around that… which is a weakness… language barrier can be an issue on phone calls… we did not have any specific program to hit these points of training… so that type of human interaction, understanding… not talking about any of those technical problems of the project but more on the team level or interpersonal level… (Oisin)

Training programs helps to bring cultural awareness between the team members… its just talking about the cultural differences… it is about knowing that there are differences embarrassing them and just learning to work together with that understanding and the understanding has to come from both sides… (Aine).

Analysis

Training can improve team performance and consequently achieve project success by filling skills gaps. It is a proactive response to which can ensure that teams are upskilled and are given skills required for GSD. These may be soft skills or technical skills, and is often a better solution than hiring in new personnel to fill skills gaps on teams. In addition, training can be used to enhance cultural awareness and to develop trust between stakeholders.

Solution

  • Conduct formal training with experts as well as informal training sessions.
  • Involve senior team members to ensure mentoring of new team members.
  • Maintain training calendars.
  • Inform project managers in advance about upcoming training programs.
  • Formulate and schedule training programs to increase team competencies.
  • Include specific hours of mandatory training for team members every year.
  • Prepare an advance agenda to relieve team members for training
  • Conduct training sessions at various stages within the project.
  • Brief new team members with the project details and their roles and responsibilities.
  • Conduct frequent training programs to enhance technical and communication skills
  • Focus on soft skills that are essential to work on the GSD projects.
  • Emphasize training which instils cultural awareness and develop trust.
  • Conduct team mentoring exercises.

Document Templates

Sadhana Deshpande’s PhD thesis.

Bridge Location Selection, Structured Communication, Hand on and Shake off session, Team Cognition

References

  1. Deshpande, Sadhana, 2012, A Coordination Model for Global Software Development Teams, PhD thesis, University of Limerick.

  2. PMBOK Guide (2008) 4th edition, ISBN-10: 1933890517 & ISBN-13: 978-1933890517. Project Management Institute, New Town Square, Pennsylvania.