Developer First - How We Do It at apiiro

Yonatan Eldar

13 October 2020 2 min read

As engineers (well, software engineers), we are used to breaking down tasks into smaller tasks. A computer has a memory part, a thinking part, a display part, and so on. The thinking part is broken down into more granular components, as the memory and display are composed out of smaller, more dedicated parts too.

It is very natural to apply the same paradigm to people. Jane is responsible for the code, Jim writes the specs, and Joanne is in charge of testing.

The problem is that people behave differently than DIMMs, CPUs, and LED monitors. They have feelings, they can learn and adapt over time, and they need to see the big picture in order to best do their work.

At apiiro we take on a different approach to development.

 

Our developers take center stage. This means that each developer builds features end-to-end, an approach known as “End-to-End Development”. Think of it as a broader definition of “Full Stack”.

You do both the presentation aspect of a feature, and the backend logic part, but you also do the design, product analysis, research, and follow-up with customers. 

In End-to-End Development you actually speak to the customer that uses your feature, and you learn first-hand about the value you provided. I know that this is quite a rare practice in the industry. Taking it a step further, a developer at apiiro is typically on a shared Slack channel with multiple customers, participating in the conversation (or driving it). In essence we eliminated the need for analyzed specs to come from the product team and accelerated our delivery time.

On this note, at apiiro there are no dedicated product managers. There are many developers that take part in product work - analyzing customer feedback, designing, and prioritizing. This way, everybody gets the big picture, and developers can gain a better understanding of the market, the users, and the vision going forward.

As with anything in software development (and life?), there is a tradeoff, of course. Not everyone is best at everything. Jon might have a lousy touch for UI aesthetics, and Jane spent so many years at low-level coding, she struggles with understanding complex systems. There are areas between one “End” to the other, where true knowledge and experience is crucial.

 

That is why at apiiro, we have truly exceptional people in all areas. You don’t need to be an expert at coding, designing, and market analysis altogether. But you can be certain that for whatever task you are dealing with, you have the best people working with you, helping you get the feature out the door, while teaching you about the areas you are less experienced at.

There are many cultural aspects, and procedures (or the absence of procedures!) that you need to maintain to have the “End-to-End Development” approach working. One of them is the diversity of the team - not for appearances, but true diversity of opinions and capabilities. Gender, race, and age diversity are commonly discussed nowadays (not necessarily practiced though), and at apiiro we also make an effort to bring along people from various backgrounds - academic, and non-academic, with experience from small startups and large corporations, with deep knowledge of different programming languages and technologies, and with different belief systems - tabs or spaces!

 

I’m excited and honored to be working with such a skilled team that challenges our way of thought on a daily basis. If you’re interested in hearing more about the “End-to-End Development” approach and practices, feel free to reach out to me directly via Email or LinkedIn

 

We’re also always on the lookout for exceptional people to join us. If “End-to-End Development” is something that you can relate to, I encourage you to send your resume.

 

Yonatan Eldar
Co-founder & VP R&D

Yonatan is Co-founder & VP R&D at apiiro. He is an expert in software development and methodologies, with more than 16 years of experience leading software teams across industries and technologies

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