The Developer Success Lab at Pluralsight Flow set out to study how developers and their teams at work maintain productivity, work deeply and collaboratively, and make a real-world impact. This whitepaper summarizes the first of three in-depth research studies with software teams on how real-world developers and their teams achieve success.
Across quantitative data from 1,282 developers and rich qualitative data from 15+ hours of conversation in interviews and focus groups, we share findings about:
How developers experience their working environments
How experiences of learning culture, agency, motivation, and belonging impact developer productivity
Strategies that developers use to navigate these complex environments
Each of these whitepapers will include recommendations you can immediately put into practice, based on what we’ve learned about how healthy measurement can benefit software teams.
In Study 1, discussed in this whitepaper, we:
Introduce the Developer Thriving framework
Explain its connection to developer productivity
Provide recommendations on how to use this framework to boost both productivity and developer satisfaction
In Study 2, we dive more deeply into how visibility contributes to improved engagement, performance, and productivity from both individuals and team members. We also explore how expecting and anticipating moments of recognition influences developer motivation, engagement, and productivity.
In Study 3, we share recommendations on how to use the right software metrics the right way. We start with our finding that although 87% of developers believed in the benefits of using metrics to measure their work, only 20-30% of developers report being on a team that consistently uses team-level software metrics. From there we explain how increased measurement leads to positive outcomes, including:
A greater sense of value and mastery among developers
Increased coping abilities and distress tolerance
More empathy and self-compassion
Developer Thriving: The only framework you need to unlock productivity in your software development teams
Today’s engineering leaders face a major conundrum
We’re seeing two major trends in the engineering measurement space today:
An increased focus on team health and the developer experience, in order to recruit and retain the best software engineering talent
This tension leaves engineering leaders with the question:
How can I maximize productivity to meet business needs without sacrificing developer experience?
In this paper, we argue that these two objectives can be met with the same solution: a focus on Developer Thriving.
Our research found that:
A team culture that emphasizes collaborative problem-solving yields sustainable, high-quality software work.
The Developer Thriving framework (based on robust sociocognitive research) is a strong predictor of developer productivity.
There were no large differences in developers’ thriving scores by years of coding, type of engineering role, and industry, indicating that the measures in Developer Thriving can be applied to various types of engineering work and different organizations.
In the rest of the paper, we dig into:
Why this kind of research is needed
Each component of the Developer Thriving framework
Recommendations on how to leverage the Developer Thriving framework to improve your teams’ success