One of the easiest things that you can do to improve the quality of the
source code produced by your team, and better yet your organization, is to adopt
a simple set of coding standards. Extreme Programmers (XPers) understand
that this is so important to do that "Coding Standards" is one of the core
practices of XP. This page provides links to web pages and to good books
which you can use to base your own coding standards on.
For the most part, things could be better (then again, they could be a lot
worse too). As you can see in Figure 1, which
depicts results from the
2009 IT Project Management and Governance Survey, a little more than half of
respondents indicated that the developers on their IT teams were
following some sort of coding conventions, although only 19% were following
enterprise/corporate conventions. When it specifically comes to agile
teams the situation isn't much better. As you can see in
Figure 2, which depicts results from the
2010 How Agile Are You? Survey, 58% of respondents on "agile teams"
indicated that development guidelines/standards existing and 54% (of the total)
indicated that they were following the conventions. That survey didn't
explore whether they were team-level or enterprise-level conventions.
Figure 1. Development team's approach to following
Figure 2. Organization and governance strategies
adopted by agile teams.