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Happy teams at DNA and TietoEVRY

Nurturing people's well-being in agile teams is a top priority for TietoEVRY's Customer Experience unit.

Milla Rosenholm / November 15, 2021

The benefits of happy teams prove themselves time and again in the form of outstanding performance and improved employee retention. In this blog we reveal how TietoEVRY and DNA together created an environment where people feel motivated and committed even after years on the same project, and how cultivating optimal team dynamics is a constant effort worth making.

Balanced team dynamics

The importance of curating the perfect combination of skills and personality traits within a team was recognized early on as the main success factor in the long-lasting and fruitful collaboration between TietoEVRY and DNA. When the first agile team started working on DNA's B2C webstore seven years ago, a lot of effort was put into choosing exactly the right people for the job. It wasn't enough for a candidate to master the required technical skills; their personality had to fit the rest of the team. This approach has been used successfully ever since, with both TietoEVRY and DNA carefully evaluating all new hires to ensure the team dynamics remain balanced.

Less bureaucracy, smoother workdays

The work doesn't end there, though. There are hiccups in communication, differences in how people react to stress, and opposing views on solutions. Our full-time project managers and scrum masters dedicate a significant chunk of their time to ensure smooth workdays for everyone. Sometimes this means facilitating discussions between people with different ways of communicating, or protecting team members from the unwanted bureaucracy that is an inevitable part of working for a big company. The main objective is to make sure people feel satisfied with their working life and that they want to stay in the DNA project.

Continuous learning

With their long-term assignments at DNA, TietoEVRY team members have a shared interest in customer success. Dedicated, vertical teams have vast domain knowledge about complicated telecom products and services and can solve issues independently. The evolving architectural target state and updated technology choices for DNA online development keep the work interesting and provide possibilities for growth and learning – a major factor highlighted by our developers when interviewed about the DNA project.

Moving towards a microservice architecture and modern frontends in scalable cloud infrastructure has enabled fast experiments, left-shifted testing, rolling deployments, and the ability to release features on-demand. Even though the evolution from Java monolith deployments to the current state with fully automated CI/CD pipelines has been challenging and time consuming, the benefits are indisputable. From the viewpoint of a developer, seeing your changes in production the same day you have written the code increases motivation and instills a sense of responsibility for the overall solution.

In a working environment that values and encourages continuous learning, new technologies and ways of working have been taken into use. A good example of the expertise and eagerness to learn and utilize cutting-edge knowledge and best practice coming together can be seen in the Oma DNA mobile application, which truly sets the standard for intuitive customer experience in the telecom industry today.

DNA and TietoEVRY team
A happy team has a great balance of both skills and personalities.

 

Virtual and collaborative

TietoEVRY’s development teams at DNA consist of people working from Finland, Poland, and Serbia, and everyone is equally important regardless of their geographical location or role in the team. With years of experience in online collaboration and inclusive participation, the impact of COVID-19 on everyday work wasn’t that severe for TietoEVRY teams at DNA as online tools for participation and knowledge sharing had already been widely used well before the pandemic. Mutual respect and a supportive team spirit, together with common ways of working and a shared time zone, make teamwork flow effortlessly.

Even complex events such as SAFe PI planning are nowadays conducted entirely online. Visual online collaboration tools have proven to be a very useful addition to the virtual participation toolbox already in use.

Fun at work

Wouldn't it be nice to go to work in the morning and meet your friends there? Over the years, we have witnessed plenty of friendships forming between people working on the same project. People with a similar mindset who work towards a common goal tend to get along, and it has not been uncommon for friendships to form that last even after changing employer. By organizing opportunities to get to know the people you work with, we have been able to lay the groundwork for an easy-going atmosphere where interaction and cooperation flow smoothly regardless of titles or roles.

Although the pandemic has limited engagement, the project team is now looking forward to a new normal in which virtual day-to-day work is combined with casual get-togethers and celebrations. Biannual theme parties for TietoEVRY and DNA project members have earned a legendary reputation across both companies over the years.

Phone taking an photo of a cupcake
The small things matter, like cupcakes! Image: DNA

 

Conclusions

A good cultural fit and acknowledging personal and team-level achievements boosts people’s pride and satisfaction in their work. This increases the overall interest in the customer’s solution and generates tangible business outcomes. The opportunity to grow within your role and learn from your colleagues is essential for long-term project assignments, as are minimal bureaucracy and good collaboration tools and processes, whether virtual or physical.

Happy people make happy teams, and with happy teams communication, collaboration, and innovation become easy and enjoyable!

 

Five cornerstones for building a happy team

  1. The personalities and competencies of team members should fit together well
  2. Team well-being is a priority, making good project management essential
  3. Transparency, honesty, freedom, and responsibility together create a culture of trust
  4. The opportunity to learn and grow keeps things interesting
  5. The small things matter! Recognition for a job well done, coffee and cake, cat videos, team lunches, teambuilding events outside work, candy surprises, you name it!

 

What makes TietoEVRY an exciting place to work?

Our Customer Experience unit can help you deliver meaningful end-to-end experiences.

 

Milla Rosenholm
Senior Commerce Consultant

Author

Milla Rosenholm

Senior Commerce Consultant

Olli Mäkelä

Lead Consultant

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