I was born in Brazil.
I grew up in a town called São José dos Campos, which is considered to be the Brazilian Silicon Valley. My father worked for the Brazilian Space Agency (INPE), my aunty for the Department of Aerospace Science and Technology (DCTA) and my uncle for Embraer – the third largest producer of civil aircraft in the world today. None of them were scientists: my father was an office manager, my aunty a lawyer and my uncle a mechanical engineer. But that didn’t stop me from cultivating my passion for science and technology.
I am 12 years old and I have access to the best scientific libraries in the country; in fact, I do my school homework at the INPE’s library. I am watching the first Brazilian satellite being built. I can touch the AMX fighter aircraft with my hands and I can talk with scientists and ask questions whenever I want. I am the happiest kid in town.
We are at some point near the end of the 80’s. My father organises a BBQ and invites a friend of his called Aldo, who works in the satellite’s building. Aldo loves the Beatles, plays the guitar and knows everything about a Japanese manufacturing methodology called Total Quality Management. I spend hours listening to his stories in between songs from the Fab Four from Liverpool.
That single BBQ gave my life direction. At times over the years, I did try to derail from my ‘science-quality’ path but, like a magnet, I was always pulled back to those two words.
Years have passed, it was 2009, I was in England working as a Software Developer and studying for my Masters Degree. I was learning all the good and the bad things about Project Management and Software Outsourcing. I had always been the type of person that focuses on things that don’t work well because these are the things that harm the things that do. So I wrote a list of reasons why you should avoid outsourcing:
- Time Zone difference
- Language barrier
- Cultural barrier
- Quality control
London’s time is a maximum of 4hs ahead of Brasilia’s. Brazilian Portuguese is my mother tongue. Although I had been in Europe longer than Brazil, I knew their culture very well and I had been here long enough to understand English ways.
I had the knowledge and the skillset to be able to:
- use Agile, Scrum and XP (Extreme Programming) to achieve high-quality software standards.
- train my collaborators to work in a secure environment, following ISO27001 and ISO9001 standards.
- talk about the importance of confidentiality and get everyone to behave like we worked for the CIA.
In a moment of revelation, I understood that “Total Quality” could be achieved if I made the work in Brazil.
Since I started Techifide, the Plan-Do-Check-Act method has been a continuous process. I wanted to achieve excellence from the beginning. I wanted to prove that offshore software development outsourcing could be done as well as, or even better than, in house. So I focussed on understanding everything that could stop us from successfully delivering quality software.
Even though it is true that there is always something new to learn, I have now seen and experienced almost every stumbling block in the software development, remote working and software outsourcing pathways.
We were recently asked to triple our remote team working with one of our clients. There was a concern about losing momentum by introducing new software developers due to the overhead of the onboarding operation. We made a plan and, with the assistance of my senior team leaders, we actually managed to accelerate our work, delivering more than expected during that sprint.
I can now look back to my youth in Brazil and recognise how lucky I was for having been swallowed by such a torrent of technology and knowledgeable people. Today I am delighted to have the opportunity to work with my team in Brazil, who are extremely capable professionals in the software industry and bring that extra touch of joy to my days with their natural charm.
The model is a simple one but it takes commitment, knowledge and understanding of people to make it work. These are the attributes I have spent my career so far developing and I’m now enjoying being able to share these with clients and colleagues, to help them succeed too.