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2019 State of Software Engineers

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2019 State of Software Engineers

Uncovering Developer Working Styles

Teamwork makes the dream work, at least according to developers. Survey data reveals that software engineers are interested in pair programming, a development approach in which two programmers work together at one workstation. In fact, 48% said it would increase their interest in working at a company if they offered pair programming.

Developers see clear benefits to pair programming, too. Nearly half of developers believe pair programming is more efficient because it helps to catch bugs along the way. It is especially useful for junior team members: 42% believe pair programming is a good for junior engineers, but doesn’t make sense for people with more experience. While 40% of respondents think more companies should implement it, companies are still working out the kinks. One in five believe that pair programming can leave one person doing all the work, and 14% believe it enables sub-par developers to slip through as they ride on the coattails of their partner.

If pair programming was a common practice at a company, would it affect your interest in working there?

Do you or your teammates ever shell into production?

While engineers don’t mind joining forces with each other, collaborating with cross-functional groups is not their favorite. One in four (26%) said sales is the most challenging, followed by marketing (23%), HR (20%), finance (15%), product (11%) and design (9%).

Collaboration Counts: Views on Open Source

The open source community is known for being loyal, but the group of frequent contributors is smaller than you’d expect. Survey data reveals that only 9% of respondents frequently contribute to open source, and 53% have never contributed to open source before.

The lack of open source engagement may be due to the key driver behind contributing to open source: 30% of developers say they contribute to open source because it is fun. Given the demanding work schedules they have, developers may not have the luxury of time to engage in something just “for fun” when it doesn’t necessarily contribute to their day job.

A company’s level of participation in open source isn’t affecting developers’ interest in working for those companies either, with 50% citing it wouldn’t impact their decision at all. With that being said, 43% of developers stated that they do prefer to work for companies that contribute to open source projects although it’s not a deal breaker. As companies look to differentiate themselves in today’s competitive hiring landscape, their involvement in open source projects may be an opportunity to attract top talent that values an organization that prioritizes time for their teams to participate in a way that adds value to the developer community.

Have you ever contributed to open source software?

Yes, a few times
Yes, frequently

What is your primary motivation behind contributing to open source software?

It is fun
I feel a responsibility to contribute to open source
I want to put it on my resume
It is required by my employer

Developer Likes and Dislikes


would rather get up early and finish work early than sleep in and work late


say their biggest pet peeve is unrealistic deadlines