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How Agile helps Developer Productivity

Measuring developer productivity is an art in itself. It’s generally agreed, however, that ‘Flow’ is one of the most important indicators of developer productivity. When a developer gets into flow, he or she is really able to get things done; but flow is disrupted by distractions and interruptions.

GitHub conducted a study with developers a few months ago to understand what it takes to help them feel productive. The answers were clear:

  • The fewer interruptions they faced, the better their flow, the better their work quality, throughput and satisfaction. 
  • When they had no or very few interruptions, there was an 82 percent chance of the developer having a good day. 
  • When they suffered interruptions for the majority of the day, the chance of a good day dropped to 7 percent. 

From this, GitHub concluded (and we agree) that the best way to keep developers happy and productive is to minimize interruptions to their flow.

But that’s where the Agile Scrum methodology comes into play - it’s a great development process to help ensure developer flow. At CloudNow, we have always used Agile Scrum as part of our development process - here’s how it has helped keep our developers happier and more productive.

Increased productivity

In the same GitHub study, it was found that 74 percent of developers felt they were making progress towards their goals when they had an average of two meetings per day. When that number reached three per day, it dropped to 14 percent - and shot up to 99 percent when there was just one meeting in the day!

Agile scrum runs with a short 15-minute hard stop meeting at the start of the day - the scrum call. Since it’s scheduled at the very beginning of the working day, it doesn’t interrupt flow. And since it’s a scheduled daily meeting, most stakeholders are willing to wait for routine status updates during the scrum call rather than make a call or a request for an unplanned meeting.

Streamlined status updates with scrum calls

Scrum calls, short daily meetings, are intended to align all stakeholders at the start of the day. Issues raised are taken offline and dealt with by the relevant subgroup after the meeting. Each team member participating in the scrum answers three questions: what did I do yesterday; what will I do today; what could stop me from achieving my target. And that’s it. Non-members of the team are welcome to attend and listen, though they do not speak. The Scrum Master takes charge of resolving impediments identified during the scrum call, as quickly as possible.

As developers share project status updates and commitments on a daily basis, the number of interruptions from stakeholders to determine project status is theoretically zero. Similarly, since impediments are raised to scrum master in a timely and methodical manner, the time taken to resolve them is minimal, reducing other interruptions and increasing productivity.

With well-run agile scrum calls, our development team finds that we’re able to dramatically reduce interruptions and unscheduled meetings… and vastly improve the productivity of their workdays.

At CloudNow, we understand that maximizing developer productivity is best for everyone - the individual, the team, the company and most importantly, the client. That’s why we aim to achieve positive, productive, uninterrupted workdays for our developers and other team members, to the extent possible. We do that by aligning our internal and external project teams and streamlining feedback. 

Using agile scrum methods, our team at CloudNow stays ahead of the productivity curve… which allows us to deliver top-class tech products to our clients, faster. Do get in touch to get started on your next project.

This blog originally published at CloudNow Blog. Link to the original blog

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