How to recognize a good application manager

Working with an application manager – it’s like consulting a car mechanic. In both of those cases, you’re paying for expertise in an area where you might not be well-versed. And just as you trust the mechanic to guide you without understanding every technical detail, you trust an application manager with your software needs. The challenge lies in determining if they truly have your best interests at heart. So, how do you verify the trustworthiness of an application manager? We’re here to shed some light on what you should expect.


Transparent and realistic


Nobody wants never-ending projects, vague explanations, or half-truths that raise eyebrows. That’s why it’s only reasonable to expect your application manager to be transparent and realistic. Recognize this by how they handle setbacksdo they own up and take corrective action? Do they provide realistic timelines that are mostly adhered to? If something’s amiss, they should notify you well in advance, not at the last minute.


Translates technical jargon


Whether we’re talking about your car mechanic or application manager, you’d like the expert’s advice. But since the final decision often rests with you, understanding your options is crucial. That’s why it’s an application manager’s job to break down complex terms into layman’s language, ensuring you know exactly what they’re talking about. If they spend time explaining, involve you in decision-making, and offer lucid advice, you’re in good hands. 

Should your current manager fall short of these expectations, it might be time to reconsider. These are the 5 signals that tell you it’s time for a change.  


Available and engaged


Upon hiring any external service, accessibility and involvement are non-negotiable. In the software realm, this means prompt communication – like a shared Slack channel with your developers, ensuring responses within 24 hours.  

There should be a backlog of all the work that’s being done. Whether you understand it or not, it should be there for you to check on the progress. And regular or even weekly video check-ins really aren’t a big ask. In fact, schedule a call with your application manager if you haven’t yet – it’s normal for you to be fully up to date on the development of your application!  


Backs up decisions with data


Just as a mechanic might point out additional repairs for your car, a developer will always find something that needs fixing. And that’s a good thing! But don’t just follow their advice blindly. Because while this is a proactive approach, it’s important to see the difference between genuine advice and upselling.  

Is your application manager showing you a list with all kinds of bugs and issues that need fixing a.s.a.p.? Without any data to back up this new bill? That’s a red flag. Genuine managers will provide data-backed reasons and help prioritize solutions, ensuring you’re both on the same page about the best approach. 


Passionate about their craft


Have you ever had the pleasure of working with a truly devoted developer? Then you might have noticed their drive for continuous learning and embracing new techniques. They love to bite down on a piece of code – that means absolutely zilch to you – and improve its structure. And honestly? You should expect nothing less from your application manager. 


Considering a switch in application manager


Do you resonate with the traits above? Do you feel confident about your current application manager? That’s fantastic! If not, and you’re contemplating a change but are unsure about what steps to take, and do you have any other questions? We’re here to help – just give us a shout!