Senior Developer share his experience on remote working that I should not have made public!

Hi Michele, first thank you for your time and to share your knowledge with us. Since how many years you are working remotely and did the actual situation impacted the way you work or interact with colleagues?

I would say that I have been working remotely forever. Except for the first few months after graduation, where I was going into my first (and only!) employer, since them I have worked remotely in various capacity, even 20 years ago when I was working remotely of an Italian Magazine. It the latest two years I have worked with an U.S. Company, Nimbella, and it was entirely a remote-only job. From this point of view I has not been impacted at all by the pandemic.

From your experience, Is Home Office same as Remote or they do are the same in the end?

It depends. Not sure what is the difference. I fell all the differentiation about remote vs home vs smart a bit… pointless. You work the way it works for you and your employer or customer and that is all. I have for example a customer in Denmark but since some people are not good at communicating I have to sit down and use screen sharing to communicate with them. With others I can work asynchronously just sending my code in a shared repository.

What are the tools that do you believe are mandatory to work remotely for a Software Engineer / Developer / Architect?

Basically all the tools you normally use (and you should use!) to work are remote today! Of course you need a chat or a conferencing tool but you use those even with people are working in the same building, even in the same room and they are in front of you to avoid making noise.

Why do you think there was necessary such a situation to push for remote working or why employer and company that basically produce intellectual services and digital, are so reluctant to remote work, still nowadays?

For the simple reason that you have to measure results in a better way than looking at the time you spent in the office. Very frequently there are not methods in place at all. You are supposed to come in the office to work. If people do not do that, for what are you paying them? This is an additional burden on manager, that they are already supposed to do that, but frequently they do not.

Let's be intellectual honest, Remote has not benefits, what are the Contra and how those can be mitigated? To clarify, I do refer to the fact that in the end some sort of personal contact or Human contact with colleagues is necessary, and definitely there is a lack of that, what is your experience in regarding this?

Hmm this also depends on people. There are pe

ople that without some sort of pressure simply dose not do anything. And there are people, like me, that cannot stop doing something and if I have some result to achieve I keep working to reach it.

Have you done Pair Programming remotely or introduced to a project remotely new developer? In a particular situation is for your experience even feasible to introduce Jr developer on Board remotely?

OMG. I really hate pair programming. It has been such a torture to do in person. I cannot imagine how hard it can be remotely. I never did it except when we have to help someone to find a bug and … I do not recommend it to anyone. I feel is such a waste of time. Work should be always asynchronous except when you need to share results and meetings should last as little as possible. Either in presence or remote. Full stop.

How do people work at Nimbella that you did not have found previously and how with some extends those strategies could be adopted by less digital companies, in order to let them be less reluctant and in the end become more efficient and productive?

People in Nimbella works like any other company working on a software project that is not developed with people always coding in the same room. We discuss a bit on a chat room (slack) what to do, then everyone works and write his piece of code and commit to the main repo. Someone else checks the results and we always have a test suite. That is, mostly.

Do you think Companies that are open to hire remotely or allow more flexible time, attract more higher talents?

I believe that more or less we are to the point that if company needs to hire someone talented at all they need to hire him remotely, because today it is already possible for a talented person to set they rules in hiring and… remote work is so comfortable that I believe everyone now is asking to it. So they have to choose between those guy desperate enough (hence lacking of talent) to come in the office… or the good ones

What are the tools or service that you do believe are a must to guarantee Project Management in a Remote way?

I do not set rules. Basically all the tools that are fit to the job are ok. I have used many different tools and the only rule is that you need a tool. Whatever.

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