Back to The Past
Management of work with one IT project - or sometimes a few - could be every programmer’s daily challenge. Changing a project, traveling on weekends, preparing for family celebrations e.g., a child’s birth can disturb effective work.
When you have a problem or an idea - a picture built in your head - you know all the tools and solutions you need to engage. Every occasion that gets our brains out of work brings the necessity to redeploy to the project and increase the danger of forgetting something. It’s clear for a mature developer to help himself with the responsibility to build proper work management.
Personal Daily Diary
One of the simple and easy ways to manage work is to prepare a Personal Daily Diary. It's like a snapshot; you can recreate everything very quickly. You can read what you described. It not only saves you time but also increases your effectiveness.
How to create your first Personal Daily Diary?
- Nothing by hand - only an electronic diary because you have to search!
- Place it in the shared space: dropbox, google drive, etc. - it’s essential to not lose it!
- Arrangement: one folder for one project, all file names: year/month/day - each file has its date (or another system of names convenient for you).
- Use an automated script.
The sample Personal Daily Diary looks like that:
What to Write?
It’s simple: what a programmer wants to hear from himself if he returns to the project after a year. What he should know to explain to someone else. The Personal Daily Diary is a thought dump - it does not need to record what is done. It is to note the most difficult decisions - why so and so. When we solve the problem, it's a good idea to write down the problem. Don't write essays, only key decisions, and observations.
Automation Is a Must!
It is an everyday tool, so the crucial thing is to automate it - as simple as possible. Performing many operations will discourage any programmer. So, write a script, generate a template for a specific day and for a specific project. Run the command in one click and receive a template ready-to-use for any given project for any given day.
Manage IT Project Within the Team
This is meant to be information for you - a system of going back in time to certain problems that you solved and easily know how. Also, a very helpful tool is to how to transfer a project to someone else. Juggling details, decisions, observations - this is what a programmer's job is based on, and it quickly flies away. A Personal Daily Diary is a kind of proof of your quality - we are more precise in writing than speaking. The more you describe something that you would like to communicate to someone, the less room for sloppiness. If you write something down, you need to be more accurate, have more details and convey the truth.
First, the most straightforward assumption - it's very easy to go back to tasks that happened in the past when something doesn't work, and you have to get it right fast. Second, as you invest your time to create the diary, you could easily find the best solutions. Third, project IT transfer within the team is most effortless and painless for a software house and their client.
And after all, it’s easier to describe the work result in the ticket.