Andela: Building Distributed Engineering Teams

Season 1 Episode 6
  • Host

    Zach DeWitt

  • Guests

    Jeremy Johnson

    Andela

  • Date

    September 10, 2019

  • Duration

    38 minutes

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Can AI help global companies access and effectively manage the best talent around the world?

Listen as Jeremy Johnson, co-founder and CEO of Andela, chats with Zach about how Andela is solving the global technical talent shortage by building distributed engineering teams with Africa’s top software developers.

Distributing Opportunity

The founding team of Andela was an incredible group of people coming together around the idea that brilliance is evenly distributed around the world, but opportunity is not.

One of the biggest challenges for Andela is helping people realize that race, gender, and nationality have nothing to do with aptitude and ability.

Often times in the US tech world, people think of Africa almost like a country and don’t realize that it’s actually 54 incredibly diverse countries and the youngest, fastest growing continent.

Matching Talent Globally

Andela is a global company, specializing in engineering as a service. They help companies scale their product roadmap by providing talent and team management to effectively manage distributed, high quality, technical team members.

It is difficult for people to assess other people when it comes to talent and potential, and even the best hiring managers make mistakes.

Andela has collected thousands of data points on each individual engineer they work with and is able to layer that on top of what they know about their partner companies, including the tech stack and company culture. With the help of artificial intelligence, Andela makes it easier for companies to leverage the fact that there is talent all over the world using data to make automated decisions.

The Trend of Distributed Teams

The notion of distributed work is not going away. We are moving toward a world where the idea that everyone has to come to work in an office will be forgotten. The question is not whether it will happen, but when.

Artificial intelligence will play a role in the move toward distributed teams over time by making it easier to quantify the output of team members.

Some of the biggest and most successful companies are starting to go distributed, giving them a key strategic advantage when it comes to having access to talent and hiring the best engineers.

Key takeaways:

  • Andela is helping solve a global technical talent shortage, as Jeremy says talent is evenly distributed, but opportunity is not;
  • Andela uses AI to efficiently match talented developers and engineers in Africa to global tech companies;
  • Remote and distributed work is a mega trend that Andela is well-positioned to capitalize on.

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