Since its breakthrough in developing a Covid-19 vaccine in nine months, Pfizer has embarked on a path toward improving DevEx in order to empower developers to deliver “breakthroughs at lightspeed.”
Pfizer’s engineering organization has grown nearly tenfold from 2018 to 2022 while simultaneously modernizing its software-delivery capabilities through open-source and cloud-native technologies. Today, Pfizer’s DevEx team is focused on finding additional ways to help teams deliver faster through developer experience improvements.
Although operating in a highly regulated environment, Pfizer’s leaders believe in the benefits of small teams and empowering developers to be a creative organizational force. To support this goal, the DevEx team focuses primarily on two dimensions of developer experience: feedback loops and flow state. Using DX, the team captures KPIs such as overall satisfaction and engagement as well as more specific factors such as codebase quality and team autonomy. The DevEx team not only analyzes aggregated results to plan its own initiatives, but also provides customized insights to individual teams.
Pfizer empowers individual teams to make their own local improvements by providing dedicated time and resources. Offering teams the opportunity to tackle improvements within their own spheres of influence allows Pfizer to transform at a much faster rate than top-down efforts alone would achieve. This innovative approach frees up the DevEx team to manage enterprise-wide initiatives such as creating a unified developer portal, reducing cross-team code duplication, and improving tools for source control management.