I have been easing my way back into Amazon life by visiting the Amazon Development Center Scotland (ADCS), located in the outskirts of Edinburgh. Before joining Amazon I was always skeptical whether distributing development could actually work. The overhead in communication, lack of quality personal contact and handling time-zones always seemed like barriers that were too high to overcome, and I have seen many cases fail. At Amazon however the small, agile team concept (2 pizza teams), which is the organizational structure that maps onto the strict service oriented nature of the Amazon technology platform, makes that teams are more easily “separable”. By now I have seen several examples where remote development teams are successfully developing and managing services within the Amazon platform.
We are in Scotland because of the access to great local talent. There are top engineers and architects in Scotland and we have an excellent team here. The center works on a number of innovative programs and it is amazing to see the impact they have on Amazon’s global business.
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