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There’s no way to put it delicately: it straight sucks when your team is overloaded with work and can’t get to critical projects. If your team doesn’t have the bandwidth to complete tasks, you’re fighting a losing battle.

And it’s even worse when it comes to software! Tech teams are more likely to drown in support tickets and ‘simple’ fixes. But how can you help save your team? 

Est Time: 10 Min

Share Share Share

There’s no way to put it delicately: it straight sucks when your team is overloaded with work and can’t get to critical projects. If your team doesn’t have the bandwidth to complete tasks, you’re fighting a losing battle.

And it’s even worse when it comes to software! Tech teams are more likely to drown in support tickets and ‘simple’ fixes. But how can you help save your team? 

Today we’ll look at some signs that you have a bandwidth problem, what will happen if you ignore the warning signs, and how to solve these issues. 


You may be experiencing a bandwidth issue in your tech team if you’re unable to get through the backlog, you can’t meet deadlines, your employees are burnt out, your focus is on support vs new development, or your management is overwhelmed. 

If you don’t solve the bandwidth problem, problems you could face include: slow go to market, an inability to pivot, a never-ending and growing pile of tasks, unable to strategize, can’t improve your process, losing your competitive advantage, and an exponential amount of technical debt.

One way you can conquer your bandwidth headache is by bringing in a dedicated team: a hybrid dev squad that’s led by their own Product Owner. Other options include hiring someone internally, or working with a staff augmentation shop.

Signs you Have a Bandwidth Problem

There’s a chance you have a bandwidth problem, and just don’t know it. You could be dealing with the symptoms as their own problems. Spooky, right? Let’s walk through some signs that your tech team is expediting a bandwidth issue. 

Unable to get through the backlog 

Does it always feel like there’s a mountain of old tasks looming behind you? If your team is having trouble completing tasks before more get added on, you may not have the capacity you need. 

Timelines are never met

It always sucks to have to tell your boss that a job isn’t going to be done within the expected timeframe. That conversation happening more and more could mean that your team has too much on their plate.

Employee burnout 

Burnout at work can happen for several reasons: toxic work environment, increased pressure to perform, and not feeling supported are just a few. When there’s a never ending list of tasks that need to get done and the end is nowhere in sight, you can start to give up. 

Burnout Definition

Support vs new development 

Think back to the last few quarters: what’s been the majority of tasks that are getting done? If it’s new development work, then you’re probably good. If it’s support tickets, then you may be experiencing a bandwidth issue.

Priority misplacement 

What would you say is the top priority for your team right now: maintenance and support work, or new development? Harder question: is that the same priority that management has? What about the c-suite? If everyone is on a different page, it may be because they’re seeing problems differently. A tech team that’s drowning in support tickets will have different goals than the c-suite looking to expand offerings. 

Overwhelmed management 

Just like with burnout, there’s several reasons your management team could be stretched too thin. However, overwhelmed management is definitely a symptom of bandwidth issues. When your team isn’t able to deliver, it certainly adds stress to your day.  

Negative Effects of Bandwidth Problems 

We’ve seen the symptoms, and from the above list it’s easy to see that bandwidth problems can spiral out of control quickly. But what if we left it alone? Here’s the negative effects of leaving a bandwidth issue alone. 

Slow Go to Market

If you even go-to-market, that is. If your team isn’t able to tackle the tasks they have now, how are they going to develop something new? Even if it’s a simple feature in a current system, it gets harder and harder to pull the tech team away from support if the ticket pile is only growing. 

Can’t Pivot with the Market 

Is there new tech on the horizon your industry is utilizing? Is there a new direction other companies are looking into? If your team can’t solve their bandwidth problem, pivoting when there’s market changes will take at best too long, and at worst not happen at all.

Can’t Complete New Initiatives

Seems obvious, right? If you don’t have the bandwidth to complete new initiatives, then you won’t be able to complete all the initiatives. Circular reasoning is circular.

Circular Reasoning

Strategy is a No-Go

Each year every industry is getting more and more innovative. And it’s not just tech-focused markets either; everyone needs to think about their strategy for the future. If your management team is focused on just getting what’s done in front of them, they won’t be able to look up and plan for the future. 

No Process Improvement

If you were trapped in rising water, you wouldn’t be able to focus on stopping its rise. Your main goal would be to get to the surface. The same goes for someone drowning in tasks: if your only mission is to finish current tasks, you won’t be able to fix the reason those tasks are coming in in the first place. 

Competitive Advantage Slipping Away 

This ties into several points we made above: if you can’t pivot, strategize, or improve your process, you’re going to stay right where you’re at. And in today’s fast paced market, that means falling behind or falling off. 

Exponential Tech Debt 

Ignoring bandwidth problems is like putting a bandaid over a major injury; it might help in the very short-term, but over time the situation is going to need more than that. Your tech team putting bandaids all over your system will eventually catch up to you via tech debt. And when that time comes, what will you do then? If you weren’t able to make small changes before, it seems impossible to make major high-risk updates now. 

One Bandwidth Problem Answer: Dedicated Teams

What’s that? A light at the end of the tunnel? We wouldn’t be all gloom-and-doom on you; of course will you give you options to fix this issue! Starting with Dedicated teams, let’s look at how to solve your bandwidth problem. 

If you’re asking what a dedicated team is, no worries! A dedicated team is a hybrid onshore/offshore development team that plugs directly into your current team, and is able to work with minimal management overhead thanks to an included Product Owner.

Expand your Current Team with External Expertise 

Don’t have enough people to get your work done? Add more experts! A dedicated team will come in and work with your team instead of separately, allowing for both new development and support to happen simultaneously. 

Access to a team that’s already working together 

One reason people don’t want to bring in new staff is that getting someone on the same page as the rest of the team takes too long or costs too much. No worries with a dedicated team! Since they have experience working together on all kinds of projects, they’ll be more likely to hit  those estimated budgets and timelines.

Managed by an Onshore Product Owner

This is the main benefit of a dedicated team vs other options: not only do you get multiple development experts, but you also get access to a Product Owner. They’ll be able to take stress off your management team, as opposed to adding to their plate. 

Scale Large and Fast

Back to that point in the team already working together: thanks to all the hard parts being handed in the background, a dedicated team can get started in as little as 30 days. A faster start means faster go to market; overages on timelines, begone!

Ability to Define Scope with Minimal Guidance

One of the biggest roadblocks to new internal development efforts is nailing down the scope. When you need input from so many already-busy people, figuring out requirements can take forever. Enter a dedicated team: thanks to their experience defining scope, their management oversight via a Product Owner, and their expanded capabilities, they have the ability to get this hard and stressful task done for you. 

Other Ways to Solve your Bandwidth Issue

Of course there’s more than one way to tackle bandwidth issues. Here’s two more options to solve your bandwidth problems!

New Full Time Hire

Another option is to hire a new employee internally as opposed to using an external firm. Of course having another staff member adds another capable person to your team. They work exclusively for you, and would be dedicated to solving your team’s problems. 

The downside to a new hire is that there’s a lot more added to the business’s plate to bring someone in. You’ll need money to not only hire someone, but also recruit them and pay for their benefits. 

Not to mention that if your management is already overwhelmed with staff and tasks, adding another person to the mix is going to add to their plate rather than remove stress. And if your goal is to get help with current support tickets, what will the new hire do once that’s done? They can’t sit around and wait for more. 

Staff Augmentation

If bringing someone internally isn’t the option for you, what about augmenting your team with staff augmentation? You can bring in developers for a short amount of time to tackle what’s in front of you. Then, when the task is done, they can move on to the next company. 

25 percent

The issue here again is the stress this adds to the business. Staff Augmentation requires even more oversight than a new hire, since you’ll be directing several people as opposed to one. And we haven’t talked about cost: staff augmentation is usually 25% higher than if you were to hire someone directly. Paying more for added work may not solve your bandwidth problem.


Bandwidth problems aren’t fun for anyone: an unbeatable task list plus overwhelmed management can lead to a company that’s losing market share, profit, and their staff. Don’t let your tech team drown in bandwidth issues; use a dedicated team or other solutions to help them get to the other side. 

With what you’ve just learned, you can give your team the tools and resources they need to turn that losing battle into a victory! ⚔️

Need help deciding on the best option?


Savannah is our one-woman marketing department. She posts, writes, and creates all things Slingshot. While she may not be making software for you, she does have a minor in Computer Information Systems. We’d call her the opposite of a procrastinator: she can’t rest until all her work is done. She loves playing her switch and meal-prepping.