Every project has its own unique elements that require flexibility to be effective and achieve success. This often requires picking up new pieces of a tech stack, learning a new programming language, or a new project methodology. Fortunately, there are also many transferrable skills that carry over from one project to the next. In my experience, these include task tracking, Git strategies, data management, and problem solving.
Task management is a key component consistently found across all projects. Azure DevOps and Jira are two task management tools that are commonly utilized. While there are different features within these and other task management tools, they all share a common goal. Taking the time to gather requirements and create properly fleshed out epics and stories allows a project to be well organized from day one. It is imperative to keep up with progress on each story as it progresses to track progress and maintain timelines for project features.
Another important transferrable skill to have that makes every project easier is a strong git strategy. Having the whole project team on the same page with consistent practices not only makes the development process smoother, but it helps minimize errors.
Having a good git strategy requires a few various parts to be effective:
- Having every team member based off the same master branch
- Maintaining a strong branch management system
- Consistent code review
- Merge request practices
By setting consistent standards, a project’s codebase will remain organized and the project team will be stronger as a result.
Proper data management is a crucial part of any project no matter the size. Whether this is a small set of tables or millions of records, these same principles apply. It is crucial to have a strong understanding of database architecture for any project and have a table structure that makes finding records an easy and efficient process. This is accomplished by working as a team to create proper data models and ensure any business constraints are properly accounted for in your projects data tables.
Problem solving is going to be crucial to being effective on any project. Not everything on a project will go as planned and will require some creativity to handle unplanned circumstances, making this a key transferrable skill. Being able to plan for the unplanned is an impossible task, and while this is a skill that comes with practice, having a few tricks up your sleeve can make solving an unexpected problem a little easier. There are many different strategies to solve problems, but I always try to rely on my project team’s previous experience and any documentation that exists to produce a solution. As a younger developer, being able to rely on more experienced team members is a great way to come up with project solutions, but being able to create your own solution will always be more satisfying and will make you a better developer.
Wrapping Up | Transferrable Skills
At the heart of it all, being successful in tech projects is about having a set of skills that work everywhere. It is important to know how to keep track of what you need to do, understand how to manage your code with Git, organize information well, and figure out how to solve problems when they pop up. The tools might be different each time, but if you can plan, code, organize, and solve, you are set up for success. Whether you are just beginning or have lots of experience, these are the skills that really matter. Keep getting better at these, and you will be ready to take on any project that comes your way.