I’m currently having a blast leading the technical team behind the LivingSocial Takeout & Delivery web site. One of the challenges of a growing team is maintaining appropriate amounts of communication. You want everyone to know everything that’s important, but not everything. Otherwise, you end up being a case study in The Mythical Man Month.
Although our team did not follow this plan when it was ramping-up, hindsight reveals the need for a team debt management strategy as it grows. After mulling over it for awhile, I’m fairly sure that if I lead a new team in the future, we will follow this path:
First engineer to join the team
- Sets-up the source code repository
- Writes a starter project README
- Provisions the application and team notification email addresses
- Wires-up application notification email(s)
- Sets-up the continuous integration (CI) server
- Provisions the CI notification email address(es)
- Wires-up CI notification emails
- Sets-up the team’s Campfire
- Wires-up commit and deployment notifications (Campfire and/or email)
- Sets-up a scrubbed production database dump that engineers can use for local development
What tech team debt tools do you typically employ, and when do you employ them?