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European software developers don't give a damn about quality

European software developers are not being held accountable for their poor quality code, leaving companies at risk, according to research.

Software analysis and measurement firm CAST questioned 500 developers across the UK, France, Germany and the US to discover the reasons for poor software quality that puts businesses at risk. It discovered that there was “little accountability for bad code” and “little understanding” of system architecture.

Only a fifth of developers (20%) reported that pride in their work was a prime motivator for their jobs, while 17% cited “innovative work” as a driving force.

But working to code quality standards was well behind – cited by only 8%. Over a third of developers are “not held accountable” for poor code quality, revealed the research, and 37% of developers are not graded on code quality. In France, this last figure goes up to 45%, compared to 39% for Germany and the UK. In the US, 27% are not graded on code quality. 

Also, the full system architecture is not understood. Only half (54%) of developers stated they fully understood their system's architecture. And only 5% of developers believe their entire team understands their system’s architecture. “Despite the regularity of IT outages caused by software, our survey findings indicate developers are not being held accountable for application stability,” said Bill Curtis, SVP and chief scientist at CAST Research Labs. “One takeaway for IT managers is clear: elevate the importance of architectural and coding standards, and hold developers accountable for the quality of their code.”