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Ramp-up Journey of New Hires: Tug of War of Aids and Impediments

Ramp-up Journey of New Hires: Tug of War of Aids and Impediments

Presented at ESEM 2015 in Beijing, China.

http://eseiw.iscas.ac.cn/eseiw2015/esem/

10b546a258d03212c0c73aae9603c095?s=128

Thomas Zimmermann

October 22, 2015
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Transcript

  1. © Microsoft Corporation Ramp-up Journey of New Hires: Tug of

    War of Aids and Impediments Ayushi Rastogi, Suresh Thummalapenta, Thomas Zimmermann, Nachiappan Nagappan, Jacek Czerwonka
  2. © Microsoft Corporation Hiring Top Talent

  3. © Microsoft Corporation New Hires often spend weeks or months

    before • Making major contribution • Reaching the productivity level of existing employees
  4. © Microsoft Corporation Percentage of New Hires 14-49% of all

    software developers in Microsoft product teams are New Hires
  5. © Microsoft Corporation Goal of this Study 1. Identify factors

    that influence the ramp-up journey of new hires. 2. Measure the amount of time it takes for new hires to become productive.
  6. © Microsoft Corporation Application of the Results Industry – Reduce

    bottlenecks in existing processes – Spread best practices Academia – Understand skills needed in industry and challenges that new hires face
  7. © Microsoft Corporation Mixed Methods Approach MINING INTERVIEWS SURVEY

  8. © Microsoft Corporation New Hires • University recruit or first

    company • Joined as an intern or vendor and converted to a full time position • Left the company and joined again after at least a year • Worked for other companies in the past
  9. © Microsoft Corporation Data Analysis • CodeMine • Data from

    Version Control System • Data from HR database
  10. © Microsoft Corporation Time to First Check-In First check-in that

    makes the release branch Intuition: • Basic understanding of the engineering system • Basic knowledge of the project
  11. © Microsoft Corporation Time to Ramp-up Employee reaches the productivity

    level of existing employees Three flavors of ramp-up • Familiarity… frequency of Check-ins • Effort… lines changed • Knowledge… files changed
  12. © Microsoft Corporation Interviews • 30 minutes interviews with 4

    developers – What factors supported or undermined attempts to early first check-in and the time to ramp-up? – What could have been done to reduce it?
  13. © Microsoft Corporation Survey Questions • Influence of factors on

    time to first check-in and time to ramp-up • Other activities that take time • Suggestions for improvement of the ramp up process
  14. © Microsoft Corporation Survey Participants • Selection of population –

    Have started recently (fresh memory) and spent a minimum time at Microsoft – Anticipated response rate ~ 20% • Randomly selected 1189 developers with 6-13 months experience at Microsoft • 411 complete response (34.57%)
  15. © Microsoft Corporation RESULTS

  16. © Microsoft Corporation Time to first check-in

  17. © Microsoft Corporation Does the product group of new hires

    influence the time to first check-in? Median population of new hires across all product divisions take 4-10% of the maximum time to first check-in. Working with some specific product group has no significant impact on the time to check-in.
  18. © Microsoft Corporation Does prior job experience influence the time

    to first check-in? Inexperienced new hires make early first check- ins (~20%) compared to experienced new hires. Senior developers perform consistently and make early first check- ins compared to middle level SDE.
  19. © Microsoft Corporation Influence of factors

  20. © Microsoft Corporation SI: Strong Increase; MI: Moderate Increase; NE:

    No Effect; MD: Moderate Decrease; SD: Strong Decrease; DK: Don’t Know
  21. © Microsoft Corporation Other factors • Mentorship • Documentation –

    Product and Process – Different Formats • Standardize Process • Access and Permissions with team • System set-up
  22. © Microsoft Corporation Time to ramp-up

  23. © Microsoft Corporation Does early check-in correlated with early ramp-up?

    Early ramp-up not related to early first check-in
  24. © Microsoft Corporation Is ramp-up journey a function of product?

    New hires ramp-up step-wise Ramp-up journey similar on check-in counts (~32-45%); different on lines changed (~45-81%) and files changed (~68-100%).
  25. © Microsoft Corporation Is ramp-up journey a function of experience?

    Experience has no impact on ramp-up time on check-in counts Middle and senior developers take longer (~13% and 6%) to ramp-up on lines changed and files changed (~22%).
  26. © Microsoft Corporation Influence of factors

  27. © Microsoft Corporation SI: Strong Increase; MI: Moderate Increase; NE:

    No Effect; MD: Moderate Decrease; SD: Strong Decrease; DK: Don’t Know
  28. © Microsoft Corporation Other factors • Team Interaction – Verbal

    communication/Pair programming – Recently ramped-up mentors • Training programs • Overview of the system – Well chosen starting tasks • Proximity to release
  29. © Microsoft Corporation Other New Hire Activities • Time to

    relocate • Set-up the system • Understand the existing system and their role • Acquire technical and functional knowledge • Miscellaneous: writing proposals, participate in events like Hackathons, etc.
  30. © Microsoft Corporation Suggestions • Apply companywide coding standards •

    Improved code base and documentation • Easy tools One Engineering System Initiative • Training tools • Guided work • Centralized information • Clearly communicated expectation
  31. © Microsoft Corporation Threats to Validity • Internal Validity –

    Data Accuracy • Construct Validity – Activities in other product groups – Activities other than code check-in • External Validity – Generalizability – Geographic differences
  32. © Microsoft Corporation Summary • Factors that influence the ramp-up

    journey of new hires. • Amount of time it takes for new hires to become productive.
  33. © Microsoft Corporation Thank you!