Snyk Delivers the Highest Quality Software Using Stepsize to Prioritise Technical Debt

Alexandre Omeyer
Alexandre Omeyer
15
Jun
2021
|
min read
The Snyk team aspires to ship flawless software at the highest pace possible while keeping their engineers happy. To do that, they turned to Stepsize and built an effective process to manage technical debt.

The Challenge

Snyk helps software-driven businesses develop fast and stay secure. Snyk is adopted by 2.2 million developers, has numerous enterprise customers (such as Google, New Relic, ASOS and others) and is experiencing rapid growth. Recently, Snyk has raised $300 million at a $4.7 billion valuation.

World-class teams like Snyk aspire to ship impeccable software at the highest pace possible while keeping their engineers happy. But without a process to manage improvements to the codebase in place, there was a glaring gap which they turned to Stepsize to fill.

The Snyk team used Jira tickets and TODOs to address technical work but it was not possible to prioritise it there, hence, these issues rarely appeared in the sprint.

“Previously, maintenance tasks were everywhere: in Jira, TODOs, Slack. We were adding comments in TODOs or creating tickets and they were gone forever. Some people say 'backlog', I call it a 'graveyard'".
Ohad, Senior Software Engineer at Snyk

The Solution

As the team was growing and wanted to maintain their operational excellence, they were looking for a process to manage technical debt and make prioritisation of technical issues easy. They started by reporting technical debt directly from their code with Stepsize’s editor extensions, and soon had enough data to get together to discuss it.

“We got together with our team, had an active discussion about our tech debt, created 21 issues, and decided to dedicate 20% of each sprint to technical debt.”
Mila, Senior Software Developer at Snyk

With all the reports gathered in one place, the team could now link technical debt work with the upcoming features using Jira integration. They can also see which pieces are relevant to the sprint work, and organise their work accordingly.

“With Stepsize, technical debt is visible, well-documented, and easy to prioritise. We go over Stepsize during sprint planning and we are able to see what tech debt is related to the work we’re planning to do this sprint, we filter down tech debt using labels and decide on the items that should be addressed this sprint.”
Mila, Senior Software Engineer at Snyk

The Result

Since Snyk started using Stepsize, they got very familiar with their technical debt. The team started to dedicate from 10 to 20% of each sprint for technical work and saved countless hours of Engineering work.

The number of support tickets started to decrease, and, most importantly, Engineers now feel that they are heard:

“I love the idea of pulling ideas from Engineers’ heads. We had an hour-long meeting to discuss any problems and we have a tool to act on it”.
James, Software Engineer at Snyk

As Snyk creates new products and onboards new Engineers, the team is confident that they can continue to deliver the highest-quality software and keep team morale high.

“Employee morale is one of the most difficult things to manage. We are happy that Stepsize can help teams ship features faster but we’re over the moon about the way it helps Engineers feel better about their work”. Alex Omeyer, CEO at Stepsize

How it works

Learn how Stepsize tackles technical debt

Pricing

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