Should project manager care about code quality?

Why Code Quality Matters for a Project Manager

For project managers, code quality matters. Code quality affects the overall success of a project, including factors such as efficiency, maintainability, scalability, and security. Poorly written and designed code can result in disastrous consequences, from increased development costs to user errors leading to security breaches. Code quality must be a principal concern of any project manager.

Types of Code Quality

When considering code quality, it’s important to recognize there is more than one type. Here are a few common categories:

  • Functionality: Does the code correctly accomplish its intended purpose?
  • Usability: Is the code intuitive and easy to understand? Does it have good documentation?
  • Security: Is the code safe and secure from malicious activities?
  • Performance: Does the code run quickly and efficiently under the expected load?
  • Scalability: Is the code able to scale up with increased demand or usage?
  • Maintainability: Is the code easy to update, debug, and extend?

A project manager’s role in ensuring code quality should not be underestimated. Applying industry best practices can help a project manager avoid common pitfalls, such as choosing inadequate practices in the development process or neglecting effective testing. Quality assurance testing can verify that the code meets the requirements and benchmarks that were set out for the project. Doing this ensures that the entire team is held accountable for the quality of the code.

It is also beneficial for project managers to have technical expertise. Having a working knowledge of coding languages and technologies can enable project managers to diagnose problems within code and suggest solutions that can boost code quality. Regardless, it is paramount that project managers understand the importance of code quality and take proactive measures to ensure it is maintained.

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“Good code is its own best documentation. As you’re about to add a comment, ask yourself, ‘How can I improve the code so that this comment isn’t needed?’ “ – Steve McConnell

Code quality is important to all software development teams, including project managers. Beyond the technical dimension, code quality can significantly affect product deadlines, team morale, and customer loyalty. Poor code quality not only presents technical challenges but also delays the delivery of projects, demoralizing the team throughout the process. Therefore, it should not come as a surprise that a project manager needs to pay attention to code quality.

Realities of Poor Code Quality

The cost of poor-quality code is much higher than expected. Poor code requires more effort for maintenance and debugging, which lead to higher development and implementation costs. There may be inefficient usage of memory and resources due to improper coding techniques. Furthermore, a lack of standard coding rules, miscommunication, and improper code reviews increase development time and costs. In some cases, it can be even harder for new developers to understand existing code.

Different ways Project Managers can Assess Code Quality

The best way for a project manager to assess the code quality is to create code review processes and have regular meetings with the development team. During these meetings, the project manager should identify major issues and develop strategies to resolve them. Additionally, the manager should be aware of the development team’s version control processes to ensure everyone is up to date on the latest version. Furthermore, tracking all metrics, such as bug count, test coverage, and run time, can help identify code quality and any potential areas that may need improvement.

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Lastly, project managers can work on developing coding standards with the development team. This helps ensure code is concise, well-structured, maintainable, and understandable. Once developed, they should be consistently enforced by the project manager to ensure code quality.

Ultimately, project managers need to keep an eye on code quality to ensure projects remain within budget and are delivered on schedule. Utilizing the methods mentioned above can help them stay in control and ensure a successful project.

“Programming is like sex:

One mistake and you have to support it for the rest of your life.”
– Michael Sinz

Being a part of the software industry, project managers have an important job of making sure that any software projects they are involved in meet the required quality standards. But, should they care about code quality? The short answer is: Yes.

Code quality matters for multiple reasons, so it’s important for project managers to be knowledgeable about the importance of writing quality code. To an extent, project managers of software projects should make sure that the code written follows quality standards and complies with the best practices, tailored to the specific requirements of the project.

What is Code Quality?

Code Quality is a measure of how well written a software application or piece of code is, and how robust and maintainable it is. It’s not simply a measure of the number of errors, but also the architecture, performance, security, and maintainability of the code. Poorly written code can introduce risk into the project, leading to an increase in errors, bugs, and other issues.

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Why it Matters

Apart from the risk it brings to the project, code quality also affects the cost of maintaining the project. Writing good code from the beginning can be beneficial for a project manager, helping avoid costly, time-consuming technical debt pay-offs. Additionally, good code quality results in better scalability, higher performance, less bugs, and better maintainability of the code.

Project managers should pay attention to the code quality of their software projects, as it can affect many aspects of the project, from cost to reliability. It’s important to ensure that the code follows the best practices, and that all performance issues have been taken into account. All in all, code quality is an important factor in all software projects.

Conclusion

The question of whether project managers should care about code quality is a complex one. It doesn’t have a simple, easy yes or no answer, as the impact and implications of different code qualities depend on the project manager’s personal management style and the end goal of the project. A project manager who fails to properly consider the code quality of their project could potentially be putting the project, and its success, at risk of failure.

In order to take the next step and better understand how code quality should be approached, project managers should consider further research and read from reliable sources. Our blog offers a wealth of information to project managers, such as helpful advice on how best to focus on the quality of the software code used in their project. We invite all readers to check out our blog for up-to-date information and new releases that may cover this topic in greater depth.