9 Tips for Working on a Multi-Developer Team
Producing more software releases involves more than simply adding more developers to your team. In fact, multi-developer teams can run into issues such as code overwrites that can contribute to the failure of a release.
Streamlining your Salesforce DevOps efforts involves the utilization of intentional processes and tools to optimize your team members’ contributions.
Numerous developers contributing to a single project can become confusing. There are likely many sources of changes to the code repository. How can you be sure these changes are all beneficial, work well together, and accomplish a singular goal?
A little planning along with some help from DevOps tools will boost the efforts of your development team, and the DevOps pipeline as a whole.
Here are 9 tips to optimize the efforts of a multi-developer team:
1. Utilize Salesforce Version Control
Allowing each team member to work on their line of code in their own space decreases the chances of running into issues when each change is merged together.
Source code management through a Salesforce Version Control tool is the cornerstone of a developmental organization and the foundation of effective team-based development.
Version Control is an absolute must for multi-developer teams. This powerful tool allows each team member to work on their own sections of the code, run tests, and merge it with the main code repository without fears of overwrites.
2. Test in Individual Environments
The main challenge is ensuring each change to the code is going to be beneficial. While this might seem like an unnecessary step—why would a developer create an unbeneficial change?—it is simply a way to guarantee proper functionality.
Testing each change before merging it with the main repository will reinforce stability and avoid costly errors.
Proper testing is your best way to avoid mistakes that can impact other areas of your update or application. Verifying the validity of code structures prior to merging will keep your main code repository strong.
3. Maintain Accountability
It’s in your best interest to know who touched the code, where, and when it happened. Accountability will hold your team members responsible for any errors they make while also giving credit to those that are producing exemplary work.
Salesforce Version Control systems will have this capability as they track each change with time stamps and personal identifiers.
A frequent and repeated error is likely coming from a singular source. You’re not going to be able to stop these errors if you don’t know where they’re coming from.
4. Encourage Open Communication
People work better when they function as a team instead of a group of individuals. Open lines of communication between your developers—as well as team members in other departments—will facilitate useful conversations so everyone has the information they need to do their jobs.
It is far better for your team members to have too much information compared to an insufficient amount of information.
5. Clearly Establish Roles and Responsibilities
Managing a team of developers will be made much easier if each person is provided a specific task. Identifying individual roles and responsibilities cuts down on confusion, overwrites, and wasted team member time.
Clearly identify the expectations of each team member so they know exactly how to best use their time.
This goes along with the idea of open communication. Your team members need to be able to communicate easily with each other, but management also needs to be included in this. Poor communication will lead to mistakes and wasted time.
6. Set Up Repeatable Processes
You Salesforce DevOps processes can be refined over time. This will require constant attention as well as taking the time to listen to team members for any opportunities for improvement. The goal of these refinements is to identify the most beneficial approach to your development queue, tailored to the specific needs of your company.
Repeatable processes allow you developer team to become comfortable in their roles and know what to expect moving forward.
Team members are better able to attack their tasks when they are comfortable. Find what works and stick with it.
7. Account for Different Locations
Remote working is becoming increasingly popular. This will lead to team members being located in vastly different areas. The ability to work from anywhere means your options for team members are no longer constrained to those nearby. However, there are also challenges that come with this.
Team members spread throughout various geographic locations will have to be flexible with meeting times and other considerations.
Patience is going to be needed when team members are spread throughout multiple time zones. Establish the proper communication channels and be understandable when it takes a bit for a team member to respond.
8. Maintain Consistent Tasks
Developers have a lot on their plate. There are a lot of considerations to keep in mind as they go about their tasks. It’s detrimental to their ability to properly assist in building an application if their attention is drawn in multiple directions.
Developers should focus solely on their tasks so they can produce the best possible products.
Multi-tasking is great for many positions. However, drawing away a developer’s attention comes at a risk of degrading their work. Make use of the multi-developer atmosphere by delegating tasks accordingly.
9. Support Team Members with DevOps Tools
The tools you use will have a great impact on your overall success on a multi-developer team. We’ve already discussed how Salesforce Version Control can support your Salesforce DevOps efforts, but there are more opportunities beyond Version Control.
Automated Release Management tools empower team members to produce the highest quality products at a faster rate.
Testing your code at every stage, including the moment its written, ensures your end users won’t be plagued by bugs and errors. Powerful DevOps tools for Salesforce like Version Control allow multi-developer teams to focus on their tasks without stepping on each other’s toes.