In my last post I try to define what motivate me to learn new things. Also, I try to show that I really believe in learning new things. In this blog, I will try to define the basic things a team need for developer productivity. This list may not be what most agree, some might see it incomplete, some might found it over burden. But this works well for me till now, and if I found something better I will change this. But from my experience in sub-standard teams and project this will be a good start.
First, there needs to be a team. Yes, that is first requirement because often there is no team to work, there are individual who just do their work. The team consist of at least two entity, at least two human. Now, you might question that I work alone so how I am referring a team to be of two entity. So to answer it, the first person in team is the Client, and you are the second person, the developer. Client is always the first person in team. He/she must be ready to accept you as his team. This is where team builds. If, he just think he hire you for the job, then he will only get a contracted human resource. He will never get a person who even try to understand his business needs. And if that happens the game is over before it starts. This doesn’t mean the role of developer team is reduced, or all the burden is on client to make team. Developer should be truthful. He should be the one, a client can trust on. It doesn’t matter if you fail to achieve deadline, if doesn’t matter if you fail to deliver the expected product. What matter is at end client doesn’t think he is been cheated. He doesn’t feel you are not skilful enough for job. He should not regret his decision about choosing you.
Second, part of ideal setup comes, with tools you use. How you protect what is been done? How you ensure reliability of software/code you are writing? How you ensure that it works on load? What will happen, in case you are not available to maintain the software? Are you using out date technology? Are you using immature technology? And most importantly, how does it affect client and his requirement? I often see these question are neglected at small scale. Developer mainly think, it is small project and not worth taking all extra in account. If we reduce those Version control, documentation it cost less to client and we gain project over competitor as we offer same solution at low price. If you are looking for developer, ask him to explain his stand on above question. And if you like answer then only choose him. I am not saying everything must always be included, but if you understand the risk/profit of not include all these it is win situation.
Third thing is communication medium. This is another important setup. Often, developers are not available to receive phone calls or chat. They reply email after 2-3 days, while client wonders if you are still alive. Same happen when developer ask for feedback and they get a reply after a week saying, “yes”. Whereas developer was asking to choose between two possible scenario or asking to define a problem. You must set a communication channel between all members of team. And there must be a definite time frame between replies. Even if there is nothing to reply, just acknowledge that message is been received.
Once you master these three things, a first step in ideal setup is been done. If you are developer, please always be truthful to client. I am tired of doing Editing job of some other developer’s failure. I want to work on new project more. I am not your debugger.