The challenge of developing a digital product with global reach in 15 days


In August of 2017, I wrote a LinkedIn post titled “Almost two years away from home”, where I tell a little of the experience of leaving my parents’ house in the interior of Minas Gerais, and moving to São Paulo to work as Developer. I remember when I finished the same, the following thought crossed my mind: “Guy, what a life experience fuck!”.

I could barely know that soon in December even of the same year, another experience even more incredible and frightening battery on my doorstep: the challenge of developing in just 15 days a digital product - a sales management platform - whose same had an international reach.



The challange

Today I no longer work in the area of software development, but I have spent two years working directly in this area, where I went through projects from private, public companies, from small startups to multinational companies and in no time a challenge as great as this was me tax.

At first, everyone thought it was crazy, an impossible mission. But soon in the early days, this thought disappeared. We were presented with the strategy and plan of action to successfully complete this mission. For this challenge was used a lot of Javascript, from end to end. The Front End was made with ReactJS and ReduxJS, the Backend with NodeJS using the HapiJS framework, our database was entirely in MongoDB, and our infrastructure was hosted on AWS in Docker containers, we used Kubernetes to orchestrate the same ones . We can say that the project followed the architecture based on micro services and totally distributed.

Our team was formed by employees from 3 companies: Assertiva Soluções, Gestão Super and Horizon Four. The entire tech team had 16 people coding over those 15 days, and at certain times we had “reinforcements” of about 4 other people, counting a total of 20 participants in the coding part of the project - I will not go into details about the part of business, because I was not present in any of the stages of it.

Since 4 of these people were not fixed on our team, I would “disregard” them from our training, so our team was in the following structure: we had 6 people taking care of the Front-End part, 3 in the Infrastructure part, 1 Designer / UX, 1 Product Owner and 5 Back-end Developers.

The main development Stack of the Horizon Four team is JavaScript, the Gestão Super employees present in the project also had an excellent command of it, but the Assertiva team was not yet familiar with such technology, and this was not a problem , Erick Wendel, CTO here at Horizon Four, was able to quickly think of a solution: an “Immersion in Development of APis with Node.js!” lasting 16 hours, enough to get all project developers on the same page.

Once we had all project developers leveled on the technology issue, it was time to understand the root of the problem. We were immersed for 1 day in the sales area of Assertiva closely following the whole process, so that we could feel the difficulties on our skin so we could visualize the best possible ways to solve such pains.

From there, we spent about 2 to 3 days to draw - in even papers - all screens of the system that was to be developed. Before all this, the whole scope of the project had already been done by the business team, the technology team only made some minor adjustments.

Soon after this stage, we began codifying the entire platform, the dynamic was that of “continuous deliveries”, however, in a much shorter period than normal. We made the deliveries every 2 days at the beginning, and later we started to make 2 deliveries a day, one in the middle of the day, and another at the end. On many of these days it took some extra hours to get the message across.

All the tasks were categorized by priority, and divided for each of the team members through Trello, and since our production time was small, we did two “daily meetings”, one at 9 a.m. in the morning and one at the end of the file.



Through the experiences and the day-to-day of this project, I was able to evolve my interpersonal relationship side, to share some of my experience and knowledge, often even debating with each other about the best way to do X thing, after all this is also necessary.

But I can assure you it was an extremely aggregating experience!


About the autor:

Heitor Gouvêa is a Cybersecurity Engineer and Instructor from Brazil, with over 3 years of experience in the field of offensive security. Author of the anonymity tool Nipe, present in several Linux distributions focused on information security such as BlackArch, LionSec and WeakNet.