A Guide to Nearshore Agile Development

Encora | December 15, 2022

With the current shortage of skilled and experienced software engineers, many companies are looking to the nearshore model to address their talent needs. While nearshoring is an excellent solution for organizations that need high-quality software engineers, like with any new experience, there is a learning curve to operating efficiently and effectively with a nearshore team. 

Companies might think using the traditional waterfall hierarchical structure is the path toward working effectively with their new nearshore partners. However, there may be a more effective way to create high-quality results using a distributed team, and that is to use the Agile methodology. Let’s discuss what nearshore agile development is and how it can help companies make the most out of their nearshore team. 

What is the Agile Approach?

Agile is an approach to software development that focuses on extensive communication and small, incremental deliverables. In addition to thorough cross-communication with all team members, agile also includes regular assessments of goals, plans, and the big picture. If necessary, this allows the team to pivot quickly. Teams can produce higher-quality products in a shorter time when the agile method is used successfully. 

Agile uses regular, daily communication. A crucial part of success with a nearshore team is clear, regular contact with everyone on the team. Agile supports this regular communication with tools such as Scrum. Agile also emphasizes using phone calls or video chats, which improves communication and can create more emotional rapport and respect. 

Another facet of Agile communication is the idea of open communication and safety. There is even a person given the role of protecting open communication and solving barriers to expression, the Scrum Master. The more integrated the nearshore team is with their counterparts, the better everyone can communicate, solve problems and create excellent products. 

How is the Agile Approach Used in Nearshore Software Development?

The very nature of nearshoring involves increased collaboration, teamwork, and communication. Agile techniques support these qualities, making Agile and nearshore development entirely complimentary. Whatever challenges nearshoring presents, they are far outweighed by its benefits (e.g., access to a wide pool of talented engineers in a similar timezone). Instead of defaulting to a traditional hierarchical approach, companies can do a great deal to ensure their success by implementing agile. 

Benefits of Nearshore Agile Development

1. Delivery predictability.

With the regular communication and monitoring inherent to the agile approach, teams are rarely blindsided. Team leads will know what to expect at the next meeting because they’ve already talked with all of the pertinent team members. 


2. Adaptability and change. 

When there are changes in direction, market research, competing products, or stakeholders, the agile team can quickly adapt their work. This is a valuable skill in any industry, but especially in the rapidly changing tech industry. 


3. Ability to prioritize.

The agile methodology allows companies to put their resources and efforts toward their priorities. Clearly identifying priorities is a key step to using agile and enabling software engineers to work on functional tasks supporting the business. 


4. Quality assurance.

Feedback is key to effective quality assurance, and this is supported by the agile methodology, which has built feedback loops into its core structure. The constant communication between team members allows potential problems to be addressed quickly, preventing them from becoming undetected bugs that could wreak havoc later on in the SDLC. 

Agile teams are constantly improving; one way they do this is by learning from the past. Past actions are analyzed, and the lessons learned are applied to future actions. The small iterations that agile teams work in allow them to use these lessons immediately, which creates a cycle of continuous improvement.

Nearshore Agile Development with Encora

Encora’s teams of nearshore software developers are well-versed in the Agile methodology and have used it for years to create high-quality software products. Encora’s nearshore software engineers have proprietary Agile engineering training and capabilities, which is part of why companies know they can expect excellent results when using an Encora team. With their ability to maximize impact with Encora’s Agile engineering practices, fluency in English, real-time communication, and mutual cultural understanding, it’s no wonder why companies as large as Citibank, DHL and TripAdvisor choose Encora time and time again. Encora teams are high-retention, which means companies can both repeat and scale their successful results. Companies interested in accessing top engineering talent skilled in Agile methodology can reach out to Encora today to ask questions or get started.

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