We're a team of 10 developers working in a virtual office. It basically means that we're not located in one office but in different towns and countries. All of us are in the same timezone and only one is in timezone 5 hours ahead of us.

Is there a specific project management methodology for offices like ours?

Should you need more info from me, please ask.


I agree with Trevor that you can use every methodology, but you have to adapt it to your specific situation - there is no best solution, you should choose one methodology and try to consider how it can work in your team (how you "see" it working). There are many tools that may help you in that case, for instance:

  • if you like to have Kanban, then try to use electronic version of the board,
  • if you need to have stand-ups every day (or for project meetings, poker planning), try to use tool for video-conferences (Cisco Jabber Video for TelePresence, Lync, ...). The advantage of some of the tools is that you can record the session and play it every time you want.
  • use any of the instant messengers to talk with people regularly, so they won't feel "forgotten"

The big minus of dispersed team is that face to face mettings are impossible so you lose all advantages of it. If it is possible, then plan a regular visit to your team members (once a month or rarely).

  • 1
    Why didn't you mention Skype for video conferencing or chat conferencing? Is recording the only reason?
    – ben_fff76
    May 18 '12 at 7:38
  • Yes, Skype could also be used. I didn't mention Skype because I have bad experiences with this software - I have regular talks with guy from UK and often there are problems with the quality of connection. But I know that many people use it without any major issues. May 21 '12 at 6:37

Methodologies are usually dictated or necessitated by either the type of project, or the company/PM's, not where you're located. Whether co-located or not, any of the well-known methods across the spectrum can be used, from Agile to a more Command & Control type.

What determines the method used it what will get your project done.


10 people already is a lot for a team, so roles need to be clearly assigned on a project basis.

I would recommend that you choose a leader for individual projects, you can then kick of the project in a synchronous manner (webcam or chat). From there on you have to use all the tools you have and use the advantages of being a virtual team. So asynchronous work, clearly set milestones and deadlines, once everyone did their work make sure you choose a person who puts it all together.
When finalizing the project it is once again important to meet synchronously, this will stimulate exchange!

Since you are developers also make sure that your workflow is standardized. Use tools such as github or bitbucked to manage code. A shared task management tool I can recommend would be teambox.

A great book I can recommend on virtual teams is: Cristina B Gibson, S. G. C. (2004). Virtual Teams That Work: Creating Conditions for Virtual Team Effectiveness

Happy working

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