Is testing bad for developer productivity? See what this means! Also, get the Lowdown on Copilot from GitHub and Airbnb. DPE events coming to a city near you, perhaps. When DORA metrics should be treated lightly. Also, a new DPE Quiz, DPE Stat, and DPE job openings! Catch me at if you need anything :-) Have a safe and productive month! 



LAST CALL! GitHub and Airbnb share how Copilot boosts developer productivity in the real world

As George Clooney says, “Life’s better with company. Everybody needs a co-pilot.” 

Take George’s advice and join next week’s DPE Lowdown on March 13 to learn how GitHub Copilot is helping customers achieve their DPE goals.

Christopher Harrison from GitHub will explain how Copilot works and the gains witnessed by their growing customer base using AI to improve developer productivity.

He’ll be joined by special guest Szczepan Faber from Airbnb, who will describe how hundreds of developers at Airbnb have found DevProd benefits using Copilot and other AI-based development technologies. 

Save your seat for March 13! 


Join the Mar-13 DPE Lowdown with GitHub Copilot


“Testing Is Bad For Developer Productivity” (8-min video)

Come again? Well, you heard it right.


Since last week, over 45,000 people watched Trisha Gee, Developer Advocate at Gradle, describe how tests can be problematic for developer productivity. But if you think this means you can stop running some of your tests, better think again…


Many developers consider tests to be a chore—just more work distracting you from coding. But if you look at it from the perspective of "testing is a mechanism to think about what the code should do, and to check those assumptions", then testing becomes more valuable…and even motivating! 


Grab a coffee and watch this 8-minute video to get a fresh POV on testing, developer productivity, and how it all comes together.


Watch: “Testing Is Bad For Developer Productivity”


Who is the originator of the DORA framework for determining the performance of a software development team?

a) Apple
b) Microsoft
c) Facebook/Meta
d) Google


Answer at the bottom of the page


DPE experts, coming to a city near you?

This year is already big for DPE. Here’s an overview of local DPE events in 2024, featuring engineers from companies like Airbnb, Gradle, LinkedIn, Meta, Microsoft, Netflix, and more. Take a look at these opportunities to connect with some of the best DPE minds in the industry.

DPE Tours

DPE Tours are free half-day events featuring talks from local DevProd experts, with drinks, snacks, and hallway chats. These events are hosted by Gradle in cooperation with local communities like Google Developer Groups (GDG), Seattle JUG, NYJavaSig, and others. Stay tuned for registration announcements for future tours! 

  • 🇺🇸 DPE Tour: Seattle – March 18th 

  • 🇺🇸 DPE Tour: Atlanta – April 9th 

  • 🇺🇸 DPE Tour: New York – April 17th 

  • 🇺🇸 DPE Tour: Washington, D.C. – May 15th 

  • 🇩🇪  DPE Tour: Berlin - June 11th

  • 🇺🇸  DPE Tour: Boston - June 12th

  • 🇬🇧  DPE Tour: London - June 25th

DPE Summit 2024

This year’s DPE Summit will return to San Francisco, CA on September 24-25, 2024. Register by April 30 to nab the super early-bird ticket price of $199. Additional details will be released in the coming weeks, including our starting lineup of speakers and topics, so stay tuned!


DPE expert videos 

If traveling isn’t in your plans, don’t worry—we have a library of over 40 recordings from last year’s DPE Summit. 


In the presentations below, the discussion focuses on DPE practices related to testing and tooling. You can quickly peruse the slides, abstracts, and producer highlights to find the talks relevant to your interests: 


Watch DPE Summit 2023 sessions


92% of surveyed organizations say DPE eases recruiting efforts

According to TechValidate, 45 out of 49 surveyed IT organizations (and Gradle customers) say implementing DPE helps them recruit and retain their top talent. 


Go to the source of this statistic


DORA, revisited (aka “How do you make sure you don’t focus on the wrong productivity metrics?”)

Since 2020, DORA metrics have been top of mind for IT organizations looking to measure and improve developer productivity. As DORA becomes more widely adopted, it's inevitable that we'll begin to see corner cases of "misuse" that lead to less-than ideal outcomes. 


Writing in The New Stack, author Nočnica Mellifera explores what happens when DORA metrics go wrong, and identifies some of the common pitfalls like:

  1. Focusing on performance metrics over business goals - having fewer test failures is great...unless it's because you stopped running tests altogether and your customers suffer from flaky or unusable products.

  2. Measuring between teams instead of over time - DORA metrics shouldn't necessarily be employed to compare groups and teams, but rather to measure how a team’s productivity changes over time.

  3. "Misinterpretation and misapplication" - a heavy focus on a specific metric often results in behavioral changes to meet that metric, despite the ripple effects at the expense of the overall project. 

  4. Ignoring the human side of things - despite your best efforts, developer productivity and a good developer experience is ultimately determined by the developers themselves. So keep a tab on their overall satisfaction, especially if the metrics tell a different story.  

  5. Poor cultural fit - whether or not your DORA metrics improve, your customers likely don’t care one iota unless your products suffer—so don’t accidentally poison your development team cultural norms for the sake of moving the DevEx needle. 

Mellifera also writes about when platform engineering conflicts with DORA metrics, and makes the case that DORA should be considered "low stakes metrics"—i.e. they are good to have for informing certain decisions, but shouldn't be depended on for making big decisions (like hiring and firing). 


In the end, most developers are simply exhausted by slow builds and tests. Tools that improve and measure build and test cycle length over time are always a good place to start.   


For more on this, check out Christopher Sanson discuss using DORA metrics with his team at Airbnb:


Watch: Embracing DORA Metrics


DPE Job Openings

The industry needs you! You might find your dream role among these job openings related to DPE, developer productivity, and platform engineering. 


NOTE: These postings are active at the time of sending but are subject to change.


Quiz Answer:

d) Google (source)

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