This week I wanted to learn a little more about code reviews. As first I thought, “Yeah code reviews just get someone to look at your code isn’t that common sense?”. After looking into it more I learned code reviews have a lot of benefits that you might not think of.
Code reviews share knowledge. Most people are going to be working as part of a team. With code reviews there is always more than one person that understands some portion of the project. This makes the team more flexible. With this shared knowledge also comes a better ability to estimate how much work some portion of the project is. When the reviewer gives feedback the are also exposed to the complexity that may underlie an issue. This gives multiple informed inputs to create more reliable estimates for the team.
Code reviews also give you a break from the monotony of a certain task. If you are spending a lot of time on a certain part of the project, doing a code review is like a breath of fresh air. It is liberating to work on a different area of the project. It can even feel fun, almost like a vacation.
Code reviews can also motivate developers to work harder. When you know one of your peers is going to take a look at your work you might take an extra effort to create something you find presentable. You would want your code to be clean and for all your tests to pass.
Code reviews are really more than just having someone else look at what you have done. They are an important part of any software development team and deserve to be formally incorporated into the development process.