A Copilot is an elite member of the Topcoder community who has a proven track record of excellence in past challenges. They are responsible for managing projects and challenges, and play a key role in orchestrating work with the community. Specifically, Copilots handle game planning, spec writing, communication with community members, and deliverable management. The Copilot role is community-facing and outcome-based, and serves as a bridge between community members and project managers.
The copilot is responsible for the successful delivery of an outcome to the customer.
Orchestrate a given project or series of projects in accordance with the Topcoder process.
Extract and clarify requirements from customers.
Manage budget & timelines.
Writing challenge specs, preparing challenge files, and launching/managing challenges.
Write clear challenge specs that tell the community exactly what design problem they are trying to solve.
Interacting with competitors and answering questions using Forums or challenges.
Reviewing submissions and providing requirement guidance.
Finalizing submissions, getting fixes, and meeting delivery deadlines.
Escalating issues in a timely manner to Project Manager and clients.
Reduce the risk of a project not being successful.
Spot-check reviewers and submissions for quality.
Manage deployment and ultimate delivery of the project.
Copilot & PM should discuss/Agree on the budget estimation/Game Plan.
For development challenges with existing apps, make sure it is running correctly locally. Create proper documentation to help members set up locally.
Both the Project Manager (PM) and Copilot roles work together to achieve the same goal of successful project delivery, but with different areas of focus. The PM is primarily responsible for customer-facing activities, such as communicating with the client, managing budgets and timelines, and ensuring customer satisfaction. On the other hand, the Copilot is community-facing, responsible for orchestrating work with the Topcoder community, including writing challenge specs, interacting with competitors, reviewing submissions, and ensuring quality deliverables.
They have distinct roles and responsibilities. The PM is accountable for the overall project outcome, including managing risks, resolving issues, and ensuring project success. The Copilot is responsible for managing the Topcoder community’s work on the project and for delivering high-quality output. Both roles need to collaborate closely, and they draw lines in their roles to ensure clear communication and to leverage each other’s strengths.
Q: Can/when should Copilots be onboarded into client systems? Yes, they can be onboarded as per the client’s compliance.
Q: What should be done if licensed software or an API is required for a client project? The client needs to facilitate and communication should go through the Project Manager.
Q: Does the Copilot need to join client calls? Ideally, the Copilot is a community-facing role. However, if needed, the Copilot can join the call and will be compensated accordingly.
Q: Can I interact with crucial details with the customer without informing the Topcoder team? No, the Topcoder team should be involved in all communications. In such instances, actions will be taken.
Q: Is the Copilot role the same as the Project Manager role? Both of them have the same goal. However, the Project Manager role is customer-facing, and the Copilot role is community-facing.