DX is the subtle trick to retain top tech talent: Dharmesh Acharya, COO, Radixweb


Published: Fri 24 Mar 2023, 9:18 AM

Last updated: Tue 28 Mar 2023, 10:01 AM

As per a recent market forecast by J.P Morgan, there is a prediction for economic uncertainty in the present year. Most CIOs have already put into action measures to cut down operational costs to thrive through this period.

By Dharmesh Acharya

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The job market has already gone through some fluctuations due to businesses making some profitability-driven decisions, and other such scenarios.

Retaining the ‘right’ developer talent has always been one of the major pain-points for HRs in the IT business. Now, more than ever, the IT business is facing a shortage of good resources to upkeep its software development services. And the wisest of CIOs are investing time and finances to build DX – developer experience to bridge this gap.

For a non-technical person, developer experience and employee experience would mean similar things. But being the CEO of a software development firm for close to 23 years now, I can shed light on what the thin line difference is.

What is developer experience?

DX or developer experience is what a software development expert feels using a tool or system when designing a software. It could be as basic as how it feels using a cloud platform to the complexity of how a language handles a specific programming.

In a broader sense, DX translates to the experience of leading the developer lifestyle. The sense of accountability for the performance of the systems they develop and the control over how they achieve their goals. Every developer knows which tools, frameworks and languages can give them maximum results. The idea is to let them have the autonomy of using these dev tools to the best possible advantage.

We are very much in the midst of a work revolution. The breed of new-gen customers and the rise of AI has pushed CIOs to deliver more intuitive brand experiences and thereby, rethink talent acquisition strategies. The modern IT business demands resources who can keep up with the required pace of change with skills like tech literacy, adaptability and people management.

But only financial perks won’t help secure best-fit resources for a business. CIOs need to take a closer look at upscaling and developing in-house resources.

But the sad truth is, most learning programs aren’t designed keeping employee centricity in mind. It absolutely baffles me that while most CIOs are committed to building user-centric designs in their business offerings, they fail at designing employee-centric development sessions. At Radixweb, we have built 360-degree, vertical scaling-up programs to equip and prepare our teams for handling disruption better.

Here are a few things we have done to create a futuristic learning environment:

1.Get more insights on your resources

Just like we conduct customer surveys to determine their core needs, you must ask your developers the following questions:

•What is your biggest professional challenge at the moment?

•Which part of your job do you find most rewarding?

•Are you doing anything to reach your short-term and long-term career goals?

•Any project or additional responsibilities that you are game for?

•Is there anything else you have wanted to explore but haven’t got an opportunity?

2.Upscale from DevOps to DX:

DevOps is one developer-centric practice that has helped developers to stay involved in the complete software development lifecycle. So, if you already operate with a DevOps approach, you are on your way to generate favourable developer experience. This will impact your developer productivity and thus, favourably affect your delivery system.

Again, instead of implementing so called ‘best’ DevOps processes, a smart CIO would leave it on the team to streamline processes and technology that suits them best.

3.Balancing between low-code and pro-code:

Have you been leveraging low-code platforms in the hope that citizen developers can make use of the drag-and-drop environment to reduce development time? While this might be a good solution for simple apps - for complex apps, low-code’s visual app building approach gets tricky. Thus, you’ll find most low-code platforms offering code extensibility.

The catch here is, your tech developers would always prefer their traditional development tools. Also, many feel that low-code platforms are a waste of their intelligence.

Finding the right balance is difficult, but it can be achieved using highly productive, code-centric platforms to throw ample challenge at your dev teams.

Summing up

As leaders, it is upon us to implement developer-centric principles. Not everything works out, but experimenting will sure refine our upskilling programmes. This is crucial to build right engagement and thus, retain top talent. Strategise smart and help your developers contribute better.

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