How To Scale Your Development Process As Your Hosting Company Grows
If your hosting business is steadily growing but your development problems are increasing, then this is for you.
Typical scenario in the hosting industry: Your servers are running smoothly, you’re steadily acquiring clients, your support rocks, but for some reason, developing new features is taking more and more time.
Maybe you’ve tried hiring on-site developers and paying bigger salaries. Or you’ve tried working with bigger development firms, but their prices were too high to justify the costs involved. You might have tried hiring freelancers but they need lots of hand-holding, they disappear after the project completes, or they fail to communicate properly in the first place.
If this makes sense to you, know that even the most successful web hosts struggle with the same problem. Earlier this year, I got contacted by an industry veteran who has built successful hosting companies worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Despite his success, he’s quite frustrated with his development process. He’s constantly burning money and losing time because of his developers. He was eager to solve this problem, but he wasn’t prepared to do things differently. He has been bitten quite a lot by developers that he no longer knows the difference between what’s right and wrong… He ended up not trusting my recommendations and I never heard back from him.
But this doesn’t have to be you. You can learn from other people’s experiences without spending your own time and money. Having worked with startups for more than a decade, I have learned the hard way how to transform a company’s development process from it’s greatest weakness to its biggest strength. (For your information, startups need a very smooth development process because they can massively grow at any point.)
Mastering your development process boils down to 9 items that need to be implemented. I call them pillars. These are highly actionable items that will help you stabilize and scale your development process. Here they are:
The 9 Pillars For Mastering Your Development Process
- Use a modern version control system
- Teach your developers how to collaborate with your software testers more effectively
- Adopt a development workflow which minimizes bugs
- Actively use an issue tracker
- Encourage your development team to elicit feedback from your support team managers (Because support understands client problems the most)
- Fix bugs before writing new code
- Keep an updated technical roadmap
- Enforce coding standards
- Do not re-invent the wheel
In the report below, I will cover those in detail, because it would be hard to cover all of them in one article. I ask you to enter your email address because that’s the easiest way to deliver it. (Note: Many webhosts have told me that they would never enter their email address on a squeeze page because they aren’t trust-able. Don’t worry, I will not spam you. I used to operate a web hosting company and know that it requires lots of hard work. You don’t have the luxury of looking at nonsense emails.)
Here’s what one colleague who works with CEOs and CTOs of tech firms had to say about it:
Samer’s guide showed me the exact steps web hosting businesses should take to prepare for growth before scaling issues hit. I like best about his guide that it was really easy to follow and has a list of action steps that I could just take and implement. Thank you Samer I’ll definitely recommend this guide to CEOs as well as CTOs of webhosting businesses who are scaling up. –Franz Sauerstein