Eliminating waste in Software Development

Most of the product based companies focus more on the development and growth of their product. When they focus more on the development of their current product, they introduce new features in the product and try to make it more user-friendly. But it is not quite true that all the companies try to achieve this 100 %. I have been working in the software industry for the past 8 years and I’m observing the things that are happening in both my company as well as other companies outside. When it comes to product development the development team focus more on creating new features and delivering changes to the existing features but when they do that they don’t really focus on eliminating waste.

Waste can be in many forms, it can either be in the code base or it can even be in the process. It is the duty of the architects to identify the waste in the code base and eliminate them now and then. If the waste is in the process, then it is the duty of the project managers to eliminate the waste by having discussions with the leaders.

Waste in the process

Sometimes it can be a rule that a development team should be following some set of process and procedures to adhere to the industry standards. But when you insist on that, it is not going to work practically. We can easily do a workshop to identify the waste in the process that we have been following for ages and eliminate the waste. It doesn’t mean that we should not be working way any process associated with our project but we should regularly check if the process that we are following is still intact and make sure it is updated or eliminated if it is a waste. New process innovation should also be welcomed by the development team.

Waste in the code base

When a product development team is working on a particular product for several years in doing enhancements and improvements, it is quite obvious that there will be lost of waste in the code base. It can be because someone worked on a feature and after it was realized that the feature was no longer required, the code was never removed from the product. It is quite common in any product development. And in a huge team where lots of developers and architects are working, it is not quite obvious to check every line of code and decide whether it is still being used or no longer required.

My suggestion to this problem is introducing a new team that will work on code review. The only work that team will be doing is the code refactoring and reviewing the code to identify if there are any features that are still there in the code and not being used by anyone. Such unwanted code can be taken out of the product to make the product work better. This can be referred to as eliminating waste in the code base. Another advantage in reviewing the code and eliminating the waste is that it will be easier for the developers to review the existing code when they try to implement a new feature. If there are unwanted code in the product, the developers will have a tough time to first identify which one will be wanted and which one will be unwanted code.

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