How Software Developers Squeeze Out Extra Productivity

For technologists everywhere, the pressure to improve productivity is seemingly never-ending. Whether building new products and services, squishing bugs, or continually updating the tech stack, technologists must figure out how to squeeze maximum effort out of their working hours.

What’s the secret to amping up their productivity? HackerEarth recently queried more than 25,000 developers about that as part of its 2021 Developer Survey. The answer is a straightforward one: Anything that allows developers to truly lock down and work, whether that’s eliminating as many meetings as possible from the schedule or making sure there’s a limitless supply of caffeine. Check out the full chart:

“With companies going remote,” added a note accompanying the data, “it has become imperative to stay connected through meetings and video conferences. This has led to many working professionals feeling burnt out, and our survey reflects the same.”

A pair of noise-canceling headphones, paired with some kind of “do not disturb” policy, also helps developers lock down, whether they’re working from home or back at the office. In recent years, companies have tried to help developers “get in the zone” by building “quiet spaces” within open offices, such as booths—but that’s also led to some truly terrible concepts, including the infamous Panasonic “horse blinders” for office workers. Developers’ fear of meetings also demonstrates that a discrete space for work sometimes isn’t enough for uninterrupted flow

As companies everywhere embrace a hybrid schedule in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, technologists who need to focus have some cause for optimism: one of the central tenets of the hybrid schedule is that the at-home days are meant for “deep work,” while the in-office days are focused on collaboration (i.e., meetings and informal get-togethers). The big question is whether companies will truly stick to that philosophy and let technologists work meeting-free whenever they’re out of the office. 

One Response to “How Software Developers Squeeze Out Extra Productivity”

  1. James Igoe

    When I think of what makes for productivity, some of that is code reuse, and libraries, DevOps processes, and automation. Planning helps, in that drawing out ideas on some paper-like medium usually makes coding go linearly. Although I am not a TDD-focused developer, I find that unit testing can avoid a lot of wasted time, working out the kinks of some method/process in my testing before applying it my libraries, particularly when the code is a external service or database.