What is Developer Productivity?
Productivity is defined as “the effectiveness of productive effort, especially in industry, as measured in terms of the rate of output per unit of input.” Therefore, developer Productivity can be described as a concept, set of tools or processes, or a team that is dedicated to enhancing the efficiency of other developers with the goal of allowing them to increase their overall output.
This concept and the responsibilities of the team in charge of developer productivity can be varied throughout different companies, however after a number of meetings it became clear that the teams mostly focus on a few key areas. Unfortunately, the developers at different companies don’t seem to discuss, have meet-ups, or work together on allied goals.
Developer productivity is not a business concern nor is most of the work confidential. The work is generally generic and the concepts are easily shared and discussed. Over the course of many meetings with similar teams at other companies, it became obvious that we’re all duplicating each others’ work and more importantly we’re duplicating the exploration.
Developer Productivity is not a business concern and it is not specific to any company. The concepts are shareable and can help reduce time to explore, gain more feedback and expertise, and allow us to help define standards in the industry.
If we work together in creating a community and a set of community guidelines - we will all benefit.
Phase I is simply the initial foundation of the community. The Slack channel, invitations at https://chat.devproductivity.io, is a good first step towards an initial foundation.
As we grow the audience, we can start to hold online meet-ups. The first one is currently scheduled for sometime in January 2018.
These simple ideas will allow us to start to grow a community and provide the foundations to introduce work on additional phases of the project.
Success Criteria: The community starts to grow and people remain excited. There is a decent turnout for the online meet-ups and people are asking what comes next.
There is no current ground work laid to bootstrap a community dedicated to developer productivity. This means that we have the opportunity to create this community and share the work we do with each other.
https://devproductivity.io will be a central hub managed by the community. With links to content about continuous integration and testing, automation, operational excellence, developer environments, mobile tooling, and other aspects of developer productivity - this website will be a central location on which to grow a solid foundation.
This website/community allows us to draw talent and work from the larger pool of engineers working on the same goals, it also allows us to share our ideas, and educate the larger developer community about standard goals.
This website is envisioned to be a handbook or styleguide for all people working on developer productivity. With a website similar to https://fastlane.tools or https://polaris.shopify.com, we will gain the ability to communicate industry best practices and crowd source their definitions. Moreover, we can expand the website to include blogs (written by the community members!), useful papers and links, forums, and other useful materials.
Success Criteria: The community gets excited about the website and we start to see traffic pick up. The community will start to become more involved and take ownership of parts of the content once the initial site is launched.
As we grow, online meet-ups will likely not scale and people will want to have more meaningful in person collaborations and discussions. The website will need more community to continue to scale and continue to be a place that people frequent.
In Phase III, we hold our first conference. Development has had conferences of so many varieties, but there has never been a conference dedicated to the concepts that form developer productivity. That being said some conferences, such as Velocity and DevDaysTO, dedicate portions of their content towards developer productivity but no known conference is targetted specifically towards developer productivity.
By holding the conference, we aim to become a driving force behind Developer Productivity and increase community knowledge and commitment to this community.
Success Criteria: We see excitement and participation. The website and the content continues to increase in traffic and a vibrant community is formed.
We may not need to go much further than a conference. If these phases are successful, we may have found a recipe to continue to grow and continue to be a power house in the developer productivity community.
We also don’t have all of the ideas and don’t want to be prescriptive about how the community grows. We want to see how it naturally grows and in what direction the community wants to grow.