Upon my appointment as the Chief Technology Officer at Works, I conducted a formal introduction and laid out my standards for assessing the department’s technological achievements. I detailed my goals and anticipations for all members of the technology team, spanning from engineers to product managers to designers. It was during this presentation that I declared:
At Works, being a technology corporation means emphasizing on delivering our clients with innovative solutions that rapidly tackle their commercial obstacles.
The Reason We Require
- It is crucial to fulfil any commitment made.
- Streamline the process (i.e. develop, acquire knowledge, refine)
- Acknowledge the potential of facing setbacks.
- Ensure that your remote team communicates with each other frequently.
- Be mindful of the worth that your contributions bring to the business
My Fundamental Principles
- The top priority is to provide value to the customer
- Empowerment and Ownership
- Efficient and Sustainable Distributions Strategy
- Empathetic Understanding of the Customer’s Viewpoint
- Durable High-Grade Systems
- Employ Design to Differentiate Products; Crafting Intuitive User Interfaces
- Trust (and Respect) (note: I assume the duplication of “respect” was an error in the original content)
- Collaboration takes precedence over individual accomplishments
- Putting in Significant Efforts (to excel in your expertise)
- Improving Your Skills (and Continuous Improvement)
As we near the conclusion of 2022 and embark on a new year, it is vital for us to evaluate our anticipations for software developers. We aim to be more precise and extensive in our prospects for software developers in the forthcoming year.
Drawing on my extensive expertise in software development, I present a list of indispensable good practices for developing top-notch software. Advocating for these practices will guarantee that the resulting software upholds the highest standards and is of the highest class.
Responsibilities of a Software Engineer
Come to work with preparation and a proactive mindset.The success of the company is heavily reliant on our team meeting their expectations. To ensure efficiency, it is useful to have deadlines in place. Though there is some dispute over the efficacy of agile programming, personally, I find SCRUM more preferable to Kanban owing to the definite deadline at the end of each sprint. In addition, to optimize our individual results, it is preferable to take the initiative and actively seek out tickets, stories, and bugs to resolve, instead of waiting to be assigned tasks.
Related Article: Defining Agile, Scrum, and Kanban: What Do They Mean?
Accountability for resolving issues, acquaintance with target audience and proficiency in providing a resolutionTo make a substantial contribution to the proposed solutions, comprehending the issues at hand in detail is crucial. Besides, being knowledgeable about the product being developed is significant to showcase your proficiency competently. Regular meetings with the customers should be scheduled to ensure you have an extensive understanding of their needs and requirements.
At present, production issues take precedenceDelaying the resolution of problems until later is not a practical strategy. If data is being compromised or production has ceased, it is crucial to concentrate on addressing the issue and persevering until a solution is discovered. While the situation may be worrying, I assure you that the sense of achievement and teamwork that you and your colleagues will experience upon resolving the problem will far surpass any transient anxiety.
Adopt the mindset of a slackerDespite appearances, an individual’s conduct in the workplace is not correlated with their engineering prowess. On the contrary, the most successful engineers are those who strive to enhance their surroundings’ efficiency by automating processes, from their environment and testing setup to their toolchain, and more. These individuals are among the brightest minds, but they are also some of the most indolent. They are continually seeking the most effortless and expeditious ways to accomplish tasks.
Notify others immediately if you encounter a setback.Software development is a collective effort, and it is indispensable to acknowledge when individual attempts have hit a dead end. Attempting to find a solution independently is crucial, but it is also essential to request help from others without delay when confronted with an obstacle. This will aid in resuming progress swiftly.
Achieving Effective Software Engineering
The code should be scalable, high-performing, and easily testable.Are there any unit tests in place? Are the test cases easy to execute? Have flags been incorporated to indicate particular features? Is the CSS built on pre-existing settings, or has it been developed from scratch? Have you considered the service’s performance in light, moderate, and heavy usage scenarios? While writing code, reflect on these questions and go through a mental checklist before investing additional effort.
Updating and elevating the code’s quality is a joint responsibility.Becoming proficient in this mindset takes time, but after submitting your Pull Request, the code you wrote is no longer solely yours; it is shared with the entire team. Displaying a sense of ownership is not enough; you must be willing to accept constructive criticism and trust in the expertise of others if you hope to see any progress. Furthermore, it is your duty to enhance the codebase as you familiarize yourself with its various components. The notion of leaving a campsite in better condition than when you arrived is a crucial aspect of ethical camping.
An exceptional user interface is essential to win the admiration of your target audience.Ensuring user-friendliness and paying close attention to details such as padding, typography, and the use of whitespace are crucial for building an effective user interface in today’s market. As a front-end developer, it is crucial to be proficient not only in implementing the interface but also in empathising with the end-user and continually seeking ways to enhance their experience while navigating the product. Whenever possible, suggest and communicate improved processes to your team to further enhance the user’s journey.
Develop code that functions as intended and is comprehensible for human interpretation.The use of semicolons can be a divisive subject among engineers, particularly during code reviews and pull requests. Nevertheless, it is crucial to write code that is simple to comprehend with sufficient comments and explanations. Furthermore, it must also perform its intended function. These standards are the bare minimum that must be met.
Creating and reviewing documentation can aid in learning new skills.To advance in your profession, taking the initiative to accomplish this task is crucial. Documenting your work is a fundamental aspect of your job that ensures your design objectives are comprehended, eases system maintenance, and enables newcomers to quickly adapt. Additionally, reviewing the user manual while acquainting yourself with a new technology or service is highly recommended, as it will aid in avoiding common errors.
Software that is swift, functional, and ideally enjoyable is a prerequisite.Following the prescribed sequence of steps is crucial to ensure an optimal user experience. Programs with minimal latency, swift response times, and no delays in function completion deliver the best user experience. Furthermore, the software must efficiently execute its intended purpose. If the process is uncomfortable for the users, it may be preferable for them to exit. Additionally, software should always have an element that brings a smile, such as incorporating character into the writing or providing a small, pleasant surprise. Finally, it is critical to remember that attention to detail is imperative, and the same applies to us.
Advancing Oneself and One’s Team
Efficient Stakeholder ManagementBeing an effective stakeholder requires a commitment to the group’s success. This can be accomplished by consistently seeking to comprehend the project, asking questions, honing estimation abilities, and engaging in meaningful discussions with the team. Furthermore, it is crucial to keep the team aware of any modifications, impediments, or original concepts that might arise. By taking these essential measures, stakeholders can guarantee the group’s success.
Validated Requirements and Prototypes are Indispensable.It is frequently stated that Product Managers are responsible for defining the “what” and “why” of a project, while Engineers oversee the “how”. While this is essentially true, it is vital to remember that a well-functioning engineering team should include testing to guarantee that the project meets the standards. Without testing, it would be unproductive to proceed with a project that disregards stakeholder needs. Therefore, it is essential to conduct testing to verify the requirements.
Offer Solutions Along with Identifying Problems.Vocalizing your apprehensions concerning the project’s requirements, code base, procedures, or team dynamics is significant, provided it is done respectfully and effectively. Providing suggestions for enhancement will aid in ensuring that your apprehensions are taken seriously. Constructive criticism is a valuable tool, and we must all strive to provide it. By uniting our concerns with constructive solutions, we are more likely to bring about positive changes. Facilitating an environment where everyone has a voice enables us to work collectively to attain project success.
Cooperate and Contribute Your Share.As professionals, it is crucial to take the initiative, cooperate, and support one another. Furthermore, offering constructive feedback is a critical aspect of aiding us grow and enhance our work. These reviews should be conducted positively and respectfully, with the aim of improving the work’s quality, rather than attacking the individual who provided the feedback. To ensure productive and effective discussions, they should occur in a team environment where everyone trusts and values one another. Finally, it is important to be aware of others and avoid disrespectful conduct in the workplace; no one wants to collaborate with someone who is impolite.
Pursue Ongoing Learning and Share Valuable Insights with Others.To remain up to date with the continual advancements in technology, it is crucial to maintain an open attitude towards acquiring new skills and refining existing ones. As a result, it is important to constantly endeavour to better ourselves and never be content with our current level of knowledge or abilities. Furthermore, sharing newly acquired knowledge with the team or group helps to keep everyone up to date and fosters collective progress.