A great software development company starts with its people.
These attributes are general qualities, rather than technical qualifications, that in my years of experience, lead to successful software development. This is primarily written from a consulting perspective—an alternate title for this post might be “What makes a good consultant?” but the concepts should apply to most developers. In a future post, I’ll present a more technical perspective, illustrating the above qualities more specifically.
A good custom software developer…
Developing any product starts with listening. Whether developing an idea of our own or a system that we’ve been hired to implement, in order to produce something that others will use, we need to hear what stakeholders have to say. It is primarily they who determine what adds meaning and value to the concept.
…asks the right questions
Listening alone doesn’t necessarily guarantee the best product. Knowing what questions to ask our stakeholders is key to determining appropriate use of technologies, best practices, new ways to engage users and ultimately delivering a truly useful product. Our On Demand Development was built with these principles in mind and we have seen much success.
…responds well to feedback
Whether receiving feedback from a project stakeholder, instruction from a lead developer or ideas from a fellow team member, we must see the value in combining multiple perspectives. While healthy debate can serve its purpose at times, a “my way or the highway” attitude is only counterproductive.
…see the “big picture”
It’s important to step back and approach any given task from afar so we can see how it relates to other parts of the whole system and what else might be affected. Starting from this perspective helps set the ultimate vision for a product, and revisiting it regularly helps keep us on track during implementation.
…attend to detail
With the proper overall perspective, we can attend to the detail of each component task. It’s at this level where we have the most control over the quality of what we’re producing.
…focus on the user
Along the path of implementation, we can maintain focus and avoid distraction by traveling between the “macro” and “micro” perspectives. Identifying all the scenarios and types of users and thinking from their perspective helps to ensure that the necessary work is done and is done properly to meet the overall requirements.
…enjoy solving problems
For most people who have chosen software development as a vocation, there seems to be an innate enjoyment in solving problems. Given the inevitable seemingly impossible issues that present themselves when being asked to create something new, this is a perfect pairing of necessity and ability.
…insist on quality
Because of the satisfaction that comes with seeing the results of our labor and because our reputation depends on it, it’s only natural that we strive for excellence, accuracy and efficiency in producing software, taking pride in the part we’ve played.
In short, a good software developer brings it all together.
Communication, Vision, and Creativity
Identifying problems and assembling the necessary puzzle pieces that result in a quality software product can satisfy both system requirements and our creative nature. In the end, it’s very satisfying to see people’s jobs or lives made easier and possibly even more enjoyable using something that we’ve helped to produce.
If this kind of problem solving, creative work stands out to you as a satisfying career perspective and looking for an amazing company to work for check out Company Careers Page. We’d love to have you on our team.