Umbraco HQ reached out to 5 experienced developers from Umbraco Gold Partners and asked them to share their best tips for new developers. Carbon Six Digital's Alex Meyers shared his advice...
Learn to read code, before you write it
You don’t need to be an expert in a programming language to decipher what the code is doing. Reading other developer’s code will help you to work effectively across different codebases and support you in writing code. There are a couple of ways you can do this, either by checking out some open source projects or reviewing the most recent project that your team has been working on.
Develop your social skills
It’s not all about the code. Miscommunication is perhaps the biggest threat to any project. You’ll likely be working in a team, so you need to be able to effectively communicate with other developers, project managers and clients. Clear, concise and timely written or verbal communication can go a long way.
Develop your project management skills
Similar to social skills, you need to be able to communicate your progress on development tasks. Tools likeTrello,JiraandAzure DevOpssupport developers in task management, planning and scheduling. These skills will help you when you’re fixing a bug or writing a new piece of functionality; breaking down a larger task into smaller pieces making it more manageable.
Expose your ignorance
It is often the case where you don’t want to look stupid but you must fight this urge and speak up. If you don’t understand something or haven’t heard of a term or technology - ask. If you don’t, it’s a missed opportunity to learn and verify your understanding. Software development is a multifaceted industry, you can’t know everything and you’re not expected to, but you can always gain knowledge by speaking up.
Don't agonise over the perfect solution
Try to focus on a working solution, rather than a perfect solution. By all means aim to write clean, reusable and easy to read code but do it in a timely manner. Always remember that the code you write today will be redundant in a couple of years, whether that’s due to the requirement changing or the technologies used evolving.
Google is your friend
Seeking a solution online is often the most efficient first step towards a solution. A great piece of advice is to “get good at Googling”. Someone has run into the same problem as you, you just need to find it. Once you’ve found it, try to understand the what, why and how before copying and pasting it. This is an opportunity to learn and develop your knowledge.