Multi-Skill Workers in Software Development


Tipically manufacturing looks for specialize work of people. This means that every worker makes a specific work, thus reducing and limitating scope of action. For years was thought that this was more efficient when in fact it doesn’t.

Lean manufacturing demonstrated that work is more efficient when people knows more about work being doing near them, so they can involve and help to do tasks. Also rotating is allowed between positions inside a working-cell so workers do another work in scope.

1. Software Development Teams

The most common team organization for software development comprises Business Analyst, Database Administrator, Developer, Graphical Designer, Software Architect and Project Manager. So functions are separated and each of the participants has a specific skill developed in order to produce software. In a multi-skill paradigm there are intersections. e.g. Business Analyst, Database Administrator, Developer and Software Architect or Project Manager, Business Analyst and Graphical Designer. If this is combined with a successful use of Conway’s Law, then you will have a more homogeneus software product in your hands.

2. DevOps Teams

DevOps takes a step further and combines, in a multi-skill paradigm, roles in software development with operations, allowing even more flexible teams and better quality software products. More important, this configuration allows a fast pace in delivery of software to end users. There is a balance between trust and control where control is given by operations and trust is given by development.


As with many things, taking to the extreme can be very bad. Too much skills in a team member and cannot there be team. Too few skills and the specialization is high.


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