Developers Want Work-Life Balance Most: Survey

Developer

Developers want a good work-life balance most.

A developer’s wish-list for any job is going to be long. In addition to better pay and benefits, suitable work-life balance and the ability to work remotely are fast becoming must-have elements for many. A new study helps shed more light on what tech pros are seeking, and it has some interesting insights.

With over 21,000 respondents, dev.to’s aptly titled “What developers want in a job” survey hits home. It’s not quite as robust as some others out there, but it’s a respectable-sized study from a site devoted to developers and their craft.

The study leans into a product called Key Values (clever!), which tries to pair developers looking for work with companies that share their actual values. Selecting more values surfaces more companies to work for, so while you may not find the perfect fit, you at least get an idea of which companies share your value system.

Of all the options, a good work-life balance was the most sought-after, with more than 10 percent selecting it. A “high quality code base” was second, with “flexible work arrangements” coming in third place. A very close fourth-place finish went to “remote work,” with team diversity rounding out the top five.

Dev.to Key Value

Dev.to Key Value

When it came to dev.to’s general readership (only a few thousand of the 21,000 who didn’t self-identify as developers), the list changes slightly. A strong work-life balance was still the most important factor, and a high-quality code base was still second, but the ability to work remotely and “flexible work arrangements” flip-flopped in the rankings. A team that eats lunch together was ranked fifth, and team diversity fell to ninth place. Other values, such as whether a job is good for junior developers or the company promotes from within, ranked higher amongst general readership than they did with those who identify as career developers.

Many of these top attributes were found in our own Salary Survey, too. Of the top five motivators for engineers and developers, three – telecommuting, flexible hours, and promoting from within – mirror dev.to’s findings.

So what can we glean from all this? Developers don’t want to overwork themselves for a paycheck, nor do they want to dig through someone else’s spaghetti code. Further, they want the ability to work from home if needed, or be 15 minutes later than some team members without HR confronting them.

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