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Introducing the Gatsby Concierge Tech Lead Program

Ben Robertson
August 18th, 2022

Over the past few years, the customer success team here at Gatsby has had the privilege of working with many teams on their journey to build fast and secure dynamic web experiences with Gatsby. We’ve helped companies launch 100k page sites, double Lighthouse scores, cut build times by 75%, and upgrade sites to the latest Gatsby 4.

And since we launched Gatsby Concierge in fall 2020, we’ve partnered closely with engineering teams at companies of all sizes to help them achieve their business goals with Gatsby. It’s so exciting to see what our customers are building with Gatsby. And we’re proud of the results we delivered. 

We dove in with Moneygeek on a detailed front end performance audit to help their Core Web Vitals from red to green so that their content marketing efforts rank higher on Google.

We went through Spinmaster’s Gatsby build and publish lifecycle and tracked down inefficiencies so that content and dev teams could spend more time shipping and less time waiting for builds.

Solera Health was looking for guidance as they began their Gatsby journey. They chose Gatsby for the performance, SEO, and its data layer, but wanted to make sure they were building efficiently and correctly. 

Today, we’re excited to announce that we’re evolving our Concierge program into a new Gatsby Tech Lead program. We’re doing this because we’ve learned a ton about how people like to work with us, and a pattern of what people find most valuable:

  • Help translating business requirements into technical requirements
  • Experience working with headless architecture systems
  • Guidance to build with best practices and avoid costly mistakes
  • Training to make use of cutting edge Gatsby features

In other words – a Gatsby technical lead. And that’s why we’re excited to introduce the Gatsby Concierge Tech Lead as a Service program. We’re offering the expertise you need to empower your team to build amazing web experiences with Gatsby.

What is it?

The Gatsby Tech Lead program is for teams of any size or Gatsby experience level who want to be empowered to build amazing web experiences with Gatsby. As part of the program, you’ll be assigned a dedicated Gatsby Tech Lead and a Gatsby Success Manager. Their focus will be to work with you and your team to understand what you want to achieve with Gatsby and chart a path to get you there.

What’s included?

Gatsby Cloud Onboarding

If you aren’t already on Gatsby Cloud and taking advantage of super fast reactive site generation, we’ll help your team get set up and productive on Gatsby Cloud. Your Tech Lead and Success Manager will help your team:

  • Set up Gatsby Builds and Hosting
  • Set up Gatsby Preview
  • Connect your Content Management System
  • Assist in DNS migration when it’s time to go live!

Biweekly Pairing

Your team will have 1 hour pairing sessions every other week with your Gatsby Tech Lead. These sessions can be used for a variety of things, here’s some examples of what other teams have found most helpful:

Code review to ensure Gatsby best practices from a front end and builds perspective. Example topics:

  • We refactored our hero component, did we leverage Gatsby Image correctly?
  • We moved react-helmet to Gatsby Head component, did we do that correctly?

Feature planning or scoping to help your team avoid unknown unknowns while implementing new features. Example topics:

  • We want to add web forms to our decoupled drupal site, what is the best way to do this? How long will it take? What pitfalls should we avoid?

Pairing on implementation to help your team move in the right direction and make sure they don’t get blocked when they are unsure the best way to implement something. Some examples

  • Let’s migrate a script to the new Script component together
  • Let’s work on converting Netlify Functions to Gatsby Functions
  • Let’s go over how to see what JavaScript is getting included in my bundles and why

Live training on Gatsby topics of any level from our Gatsby Curriculum. Example topics include:

  • Creating pages
  • Working with flexible page components
  • Sourcing Nodes
  • Code Splitting
  • Working with Themes
  • Measuring performance

Gatsby New Feature Training

We’ll provide training on new product releases three times a year to help your team utilize cutting edge Gatsby features. Some examples:

  • What you can do with the new Gatsby Head and Script components
  • When to use Server Side Rendering vs Deferred Static Generation vs Client Side Rendering vs Static Site Generation
  • How to migrate to Gatsby Cloud ImageCDN

Quarterly Business Review & Strategy

Your Gatsby Success Manager will conduct quarterly strategy sessions with you to ensure you’re getting the most value out of Gatsby and the Concierge program. We’ll review what was accomplished in the last quarter, identify the top priorities for the next quarter and chart out a path to get there.

Who is this program for?

We’ve worked with a lot of different kinds of teams over the years, but here’s some examples of teams that have benefitted from having a Gatsby Tech Lead.

Teams that are new(er) to Gatsby. If you’re building your first Gatsby site, a Gatsby Tech Lead can help ensure that your site is fast, secure, and maintainable. You’ll get help avoiding complicated or expensive mistakes and be confident that your solutions will scale.

Teams that want to democratize Gatsby knowledge across the team. We’ve worked with teams where one person is pretty comfortable with Gatsby, but others are less familiar. In those cases, you can lean on your Gatsby Tech Lead for skill training and answering questions.

Experienced teams who want guidance on leveraging cutting-edge Gatsby features. Maybe you’ve got a team with plenty of Gatsby experience, but you want to make sure that your knowledge stays current with the latest best practices and features. When helpful, we can sometimes get you early access!

What does a year look like?

Your first year in the program would start out with Gatsby Cloud onboarding, with us working together to get your content and developer teams onboarded and productive in Gatsby Cloud.

We’ll make sure that your content management system (or systems!) are connected to Gatsby Cloud to give your content teams a uniquely fast preview experience. We’ll make sure your development team has properly configured development, staging, and production instances of your site – including preview builds of all pull requests – so they can test out changes before merging. By the end of the quarter, content & dev teams will feel productive in Gatsby Cloud.

Next up on your roadmap might be a dynamic page that you have some ideas on how to implement but you want help scoping and planning that feature. Your Gatsby Tech Lead can help clarify your business requirements and help you decide between different rendering strategies – server side rendering, static site generation, deferred static generation, or client side rendering. Then, they’ll help review the work your team is doing to make sure it’s on the right track. By the end of a quarter, you’ll have a solution your team is really proud of!

Up next, you might identify that front end performance is a key priority. Over 6-8 sessions, your Gatsby Tech Lead can show your team best practices for testing front end performance, reviewing network requests, analyzing JavaScript bundles and profiling JavaScript to help you identify performance issues. Your Tech Lead can help your team identify issues that need to be addressed, provide recommendations on how to fix them, and review the updates your team makes to confirm it’s been implemented correctly. By the end of a quarter, you’ll have improved your Lighthouse scores by 20+ points. 

Once your team is confident on the performance side, it might be time to look at implementing some new Gatsby features. Maybe your team has heard of the Head API or Slice API, but isn’t sure what they are or why they would use them. Your Gatsby Tech Lead can explain these to you and help you understand how your site would benefit from them, and guide your team as they implement these cutting edge features, reviewing their progress and making sure they don’t run into any blockers. After you implement these features, your team will be proud of your improved DX.

Heading into the next year, you may want to look at upgrading to the newest Gatsby version or have questions about building a source plugin among many other things – and your Gatsby Tech Lead can guide your team every step of the way. And for teams who really just want a traditional performance audit as we’ve offered in the past, we can still do that in our tech lead program.

Here’s an example of one engagement  as presented at a year-end annual review – we’ve combined a couple different customers to make it more representative, but hopefully you get the idea. 

Interested?

We’re confident that the Gatsby Tech Lead service helps teams transform their experience with Gatsby positively. If the results we can help your team deliver sound interesting (and they should!), get in touch here.

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