Checklist for Recruiting a Global Team

In March, I was ready. I got a call from a startup where I am on the board. They had lost a big chunk of their development team, they were working from home, and they wanted to switch to a global team. I was able to run my playbook, and fill five slots in two weeks. I was also able to increase the value delivered by simplifying the product and improving focus. We compressed a 700 ticket backlog into a 10 slot Kanban board. By June, revenue had increased 3X.

Suddenly, everyone wants a software team that’s distributed, global, and rocking with continuous delivery. Here’s a checklist to help you get the best team, fast.

Photo by Vidar Nordli-Mathisen on Unsplash

I have been studying and building and managing these teams since 1999, when I called it “inspired by open source”. I started a SaaS company in 2005 to give them online workspaces. I wrote a book on a style of continuous agile development that works well for distributed teams.

Many startups will benefit from an approach that includes

  • A global, distributed team

You can build this type of team quickly. Here are the questions I ask to set it up.


  • What is your monthly budget for a fully formed development operation?


  • How does product management work? Strong product management is the most important factor in product success. Do you have engaged product managers, or are you going to need to engage the development team by giving them success metrics and customer access?


  • Who will work with candidates on a daily basis?


  • What does the software stack look like now?


What is the infrastructure that we will bring candidates into?

  • Code repository

When you can answer these questions, you will be ready to start your recruiting and production machine.

SaaS entrepreneur/engineer. Founder of MAXOS, Real World DeFi. Previously founded Assembla, PowerSteering Software, on team at SNL Financial.

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