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Fun Facts About Developers We Learned from the 2019 Stack Overflow Developer Survey

A couple weeks ago we shared statistics from the 2019 Stack Overflow Developer Survey that summarized the most popular technologies and tech trends among developers. Sure, these are helpful if you’re planning your career, but are you also interested how your opinions, habits and preferences compare to other developers world-wide? If so, keep on reading! (if not, keep reading anyway… it might be better than whatever else you were planning to do)

Developer Job Searching Experiences

Fun Facts About Developers We Learned from the 2019 Stack Overflow Developer SurveyOf the survey respondents who were from Canada, 74.7% were employed full-time and only 9.3% were independent contractors, meaning not all job search findings may be relevant or accurate for the IT contractor community. That said, these facts remain interesting in understanding what you’re up against during your next job search:

  • 3% of developers are satisfied with their current career and 65.7%, slightly less, are satisfied with their current job. Vice-versa, only 16.6% are dissatisfied with their career and 21.9% are dissatisfied with their current job.
  • 13% of developers are actively seeking a new job and 58.3% are open to new opportunities if they arise
  • When asked about the last time they updated their resume, nearly half (42.8%) said it was when they started preparing their job search and another 14.5% said it was only because they heard about a new opportunity. We recommend being part of the 32.8% who updated their resume because something changed in their experience.
  • Most commonly, successful interviews included a meeting with senior management, a meeting with other peers in the same role, and some sort of code-writing assignment. For those who dislike brain teasers, the good news is that only 19.3% reported having one of those in their last job interview.
  • Speaking of writing code, 14.7% of developers reported having to answer the FizzBuzz question. If you haven’t heard of that, it’s a growing trend and worth researching if you plan on job searching any time soon.

Common Work Habits Among Developers

Developers also share work habits and preferences once on the job. Here a few of our favourite facts from the 2019 Stack Overflow Survey results:

  • More than half of the respondents said they work from home more than once/month and 15.4% of respondents work from home more than half the time. That being said, 59.2% of respondents said they are happier at the office.
  • Canadian developers work an average of 40.2 hours per week. Compared to the rest of the world, the Netherlands have the shortest average week (38.1 hours) and Poland has the longest (44.6 hours).
  • 2% of developers believe they need to be a manager if they want to make more money and about a quarter of them would like a manager position in the future. 81% of developers are confident in their current managers.
  • Although stereotyped as introverted, 60% of developers prefer to have offline conversations rather than just online.
  • 8% of developers do code reviews because they see value in it, and another 7.6% only do them because they’re told to (the remainder don’t do code reviews at all). Most developers (62.7%) spend 2-5 hours per week reviewing code.
  • The greatest challenges to developers’ productivity are:
    1. Distracting work environment
    2. Meetings
    3. Being tasked with non-development work
    4. Not enough people for the workload
    5. Lack of support from management

Random Facts About Developers

Did you know that when it comes to online handle terminology, most developers prefer the word “username”? Here are a few other tidbits of knowledge for your watercooler conversation:

  • Developers are confident but some are lacking self-awareness.6% believe they are above average developers and 23.9% say they are average. Only 7.4% admit to being below average. Depending on your definition of average, statistics say that a few developers can’t be as great as they believe themselves to be.
  • A developer’s work is never done. Have you ever wondered why just because you can create an incredible app, people assume you can also make their printer work? You’re not the only one. Nine out of ten developers say they’re the IT support person at home.
  • Developers are not trendy when it comes to social media preferences. According to Buffer, Reddit is the world’s 13th most popular social network, yet it’s #1 among developers. The top 5 social networks among developers compared to the rest of the world are:
    1. Reddit (average: #13)
    2. YouTube (average: #2)
    3. WhatsApp (average: #3)
    4. Facebook (average: #1)
    5. Twitter (average: #12)

Now that’s a lot of data! How do you compare to the tens of thousands of developers who responded to the survey?

Technology Trends from the 2019 Stack Overflow Developer Survey

Every year, Stack Overflow surveys tens of thousands of developers around the world to understand how they work, what technologies they use and some other fun facts. The complete report is packed with overwhelming amounts of data that offers something for everybody.

Blockchain is one tech trend the world loves to follow these days and Stack Overflow asked developers their opinions on it. The technology has been making headlines for the last few years but still not necessarily finding its place in the mainstream. The results saw that 80% of organizations are not using Blockchain at all and developers have mixed reviews on how it can be used in the future. Sure, two-thirds of the respondents said Blockchain can be useful in various aspects, but 16.8% say it is a passing fad and 15.6% believe that Blockchain is an irresponsible use of resources.

Expectedly, as they do every year, Stack Overflow used the opportunity to learn about the most popular, loved, hated and wanted technologies. The charts are long and filled with data, so we summarized the findings in the tables below:

Programming, Scripting and Markup Languages
It’s no surprise that JavaScript continues to rank at the top of the list of most popular languages and Stack Overflow pointed out that Python continues to be the fastest growing language — also no surprise. If you want to get paid more, it’s clear that you’re going to have to work with some of the less popular languages. The good news is there are a few languages in the “Most Loved” column and only one in the “Most Dreaded” column (sorry Erlang).
Web Frameworks
For the first time this year, Stack Overflow asked about frameworks for the web separately from other frameworks and libraries. jQuery is the most broadly used. It’s also interesting to note that the results in the tables only represent responses by professional developers and when all developers were surveyed, React.js actually ranked higher than Angular.js in popularity.
Other Frameworks, Libraries and Tools
Although they didn’t make the top 5, more developers did say they use the deep learning framework TensorFlow more than Torch/PyTorch. Interestingly, Torch/PyTorch is more loved than TensorFlow, but TensorFlow is one of the “Most Wanted” (developers who do not yet use it but say they want to learn it).
Databases
As expected, MySQL remains the most popular database used among developers and, for the third year in a row, Redis took the top spot in the Most Loved category and MongoDB clinched #1 in Most Wanted.
Platforms
New this year, Stack Overflow asked developers about container technologies and Docker turned out to be the third most broadly used platform, second most loved and first most wanted.
Developer Environments
When it comes to Developer environments, it’s clear that Visual Studio Code takes the cake, specifically among Web Developers, DevOps and SREs. It ranks the second most popular among Mobile Developers, who are slightly more likely to choose Android Studio.

The survey report contains loads more information around technology trends and predictions by developers. Some are obvious (more developers use Windows as their primary operating systems), some facts are fun but useless (30% believe Elon Musk will be this year’s most influential person in tech) and some are super detailed (you can dive much deeper into the stats summarized in the tables above). If you’re interested or have some extra time, check out the complete report to see all of the data for yourself.

Top Tech According to Stack Overflow

Once again, Stack Overflow has put together one of the most comprehensive surveys of developer trends in their annual Developer Survey. There are a plethora of results and insights in there, from demographics of developers around the world, information on how developers think and, of course, leading technologies being used today.

On top of general popularity of various languages and platforms, the Stack Overflow survey is unique in that it looks at the most loved (technologies being used where the developer expressed interest in continuing to do so), dreaded (technologies being used where the developer has no interest in continuing) and wanted (technologies developers aren’t using but expressed an interest in using it) technologies, as well as the top paying ones.

Top Programming, Scripting and Markup Languages

It’s no surprise that once again JavaScript is the most commonly used programming language, nor should anyone be shocked that Python continues to rise and this year became more popular than C#. Interestingly enough, those are also the top to languages developers most want to work with and also make the top 10 list of languages developers want to continue using.

Top Platforms

There also isn’t much surprise in the most popular platforms used among developers, with Linux and Windows Desktop or Server being the ones where most developers have done work in the past year. The difference is that more than three quarters of the people currently using Linux want to continue doing so, where as Windows didn’t even make the top 10 most loved platforms. It’s also worth noting that although WordPress makes the list as one of the most popular platforms, it’s also one of the most dreaded.

Best Paid Jobs

Perhaps you don’t care about what people use and enjoy using, you want to know what’s going to bring in the most cash. For starters, especially if you’re joining the workforce and planning your career path, here’s a look at the top paid developer types around the world and what they make in USD:

Top Paying Job Titles According to Stack Overflow

More specifically, these are the technologies making money…

Top Paying Skills According to Stack Overflow

Stack Overflow Says This About Developers in the Workplace

We recently shared some results of the 2017 Stack Overflow Developer Survey, specifically as they pertained to technologies used around the world. The survey was completed by over 51,000 developers and covered off a myriad of topics from technology trends to work habits to values and opinions. For example, the majority of professionals use both Agile and Scrum methodologies and less than 20% of developers work remotely more than half of the time (only 10% of Canadian respondents work remotely full-time).

Job Satisfaction Among IT Professionals

If you’re not satisfied with your current career path and think it’s normal for professionals in the technology field, think again. Most of the respondents rated their career satisfaction 8/10, with a high percentage rating it a 9 or 10. Interestingly enough, that satisfaction had a slight jump for IT professionals who had four or more years of experience.

Keeping in mind that a large proportion of respondents were full-time employees as opposed to independent contractors, there were some evident priorities that developers look for in a job in order to be happy. Compensation and benefits packages, as well as the technologies they get to use were second and third most important, respectively, but topping the list of preferred perks is professional development. It’s safe to conclude, then, that most developers and technology professionals understand the importance of keeping their skills up-to-date. If you’re not, it won’t be long until you fall behind and become less competitive.

Developers’ Values in the Workplace

Understanding what developers value and what they expect from their peers is a helpful way to fit in with a new team while on contract or manage a client’s employees should you end up in that position. Stack Overflow took a thought-provoking approach achieve this by asking developers how they would recruit and manage, if they had the opportunity. First, respondents agreed that the top priorities for hiring a developer should be communication, a track record of getting things done and knowledge of algorithms and data structures. Note how the ability to perform the specific role isn’t even in the top 3! Once on the job, they prioritized customer satisfaction, completing projects on time and budget, and peer ratings as the top performance metrics for people in their field.

As Cameron McCallum, Eagle’ Regional Vice President pointed out on in a recent post, diversity in the IT industry not only exists on a large scale, but it’s extremely valuable for companies. In his article, Cam points out that the industry still has a ways to go but Stack Overflow shows that we’re making good progress. In fact, almost 90% of respondents agreed that diversity is important in the workplace. It’s interesting to note that of all survey participants, women were more likely to value diversity than men.

The Really Important Findings

Stack Overflow works hard to understand important trends among developers and, thankfully, they captured answers to the questions that make us lose sleep, like if developers prefer tabs or spaces and their true thoughts on noisy key boards. Perhaps the most urgent is the proper way to say the word “GIF” and those results are displayed in the graphic below.Stack Overflow Says This About Developers in the Workplace

This is just a very quick summary of the many, many details you can find in the complete survey results. If you find this interesting (and you have time to kill) take a scroll through the results and see how you match up against the developers who took the 2017 Stack Overflow Developers Survey.

Another Year, Another Stack Overflow Developer Survey

Results of the 2017 Stack Overflow Developer Survey were released in March and, once again, it’s packed with valuable insight (and a few useless fun facts) for anybody in the IT industry, from developers to managers to recruiters.

This year’s survey was completed by over 51,000 developers from around the world, with nearly 14,000 of them residing in North America.  Of all respondents, 72.6% classified themselves as web developers, while desktop applications developers, mobile developers, database administrators, systems administrators, and DevOps specialists also topped the list.

The results produce some interesting revelations about developers around the world, including the make-up as well as their values. For example, while the survey was predominately completed by men (88.6% of respondents), Stack Overflow still concluded that women are most likely to take on roles such as Data Scientist, Mobile & Web Developer, Quality Assurance or Graphic Designer. In addition, not all developers consider formal education to be important. In fact, a third of them said it’s not very important or not at all important. Of all respondents, the majority agreed that the best way to learn is by taking online courses or buying books and working through the exercises.

Another Year, Another Stack Overflow Developer SurveyIn addition to developer behaviours and opinions (which we’ll summarize more in a future post) the survey also identifies helpful trends around developer technologies. For example, the chart to the right displays the top 10 most used programming languages in 2017.  You can also find charts for the top libraries (Node.js, Angular.js and .NET Core top that list) as well as the top databases (MySQL, SQL Server, SQLite). For each of those, Stack Overflow asked developers for their most loved, dreaded, and wanted technologies. Those results were usually consistent with the most used, but also generated some notable observations. Python, which overtook PHP in the Most Used list after 5 years, also shot to the top of the Most Loved.

Finally, with all of these technologies, IT contractors and full-time professionals alike always want to know which will get them the most money. Below is a list of the ones making over $100K in the US. Interestingly enough, Objective-C, CoffeeScript and Perl were also the 6th, 3rd, and 8th most dreaded technologies, respectively.

  • Go
  • Scala
  • Objective-C
  • CoffeeScript
  • Perl
  • C++
  • C
  • R
  • Swift
  • TypeScript

If you can’t get enough of statistics and survey results, you can check out the complete report here. We also shared 2016’s most loved, dreaded and wanted tech last year, in case you’d like to have a look at how things have changed.

Did you complete the 2017 Stack Overflow Survey? Are any of the results consistent with your opinions? Let us know in the comments below!

The Most Loved, Dreaded and Wanted Tech

We referenced the 2016 Stack Overflow Developer Survey a couple times this month, using its findings to back-up some claims. The survey is filled with knowledge and trends about top technologies and pay rates, and some fun stats like preferences over Star Wars and Star Trek.

One set of charts we found particularly interesting is about the most loved, dreaded and wanted pieces of technology. It seems the most loved are Rust, Swift and F#, while developers on Stack Overflow dread Visual Basic and WordPress the most. More importantly for an IT contractor looking to keep skills up-to-date is the most wanted technologies, where Android, Node.js and AngularJS top the list. Have a look at the charts below and feel free to leave us any comments.

Most Wanted Tech

Most Dreaded Tech

Most Loved Tech