Dev Rel success requires an ongoing connection to a community of peers

Dev Rel Bill of Rights, Article 10

Developer Relations is one of the most strategically important roles for any company that wants to build a successful technology platform. We’re working with the community to create a Dev Rel Bill of Rights. In this article we explore article 10: connection to a community of peers.

Developer Relations practitioners need access to peers for learning and sharing through events and online community.

Being a human-centered field, Dev Rel can’t happen in isolation — we need to be talking to each other, observing each other’s work and communities, and learning from each other’s experiences. But too often, Dev Rel teams are forced to treat connecting with peers as an optional luxury or a “nice-to-have” afterthought.

Instead, Dev Rel should plan ahead for regular, structured, intentional communication with peers. The specific effort can take whatever form works, from formal conferences focused on Dev Rel best practices, to ongoing chat channels, ad-hoc meetups and community events. The important thing is that both a Dev Rel team and management recognize that a peer community is necessary for achieving goals like ongoing professional development or building inclusive communities.

With that support network and infrastructure in place, Dev Rel will see benefits not just for the individual people who do the work of developer relations, developer advocacy, or developer evangelism, but for the field as a whole. By building a network that is bigger than any one person, product or company, the Dev Rel community as a whole can push the practice forward.

Questions to ask:

  • Does everyone on the Dev Rel team have contacts with peers in analogous roles at other organizations?
  • Are Dev Rel staff members allowed to schedule explicit time for conversation or exchanges with other Dev Rel practitioners?
  • Does the conference or event budget support Dev Rel team members attending events to build their own skills and network, not just events designed to reach developers?

Read the original Dev Rel Bill of Rights and discover the other articles in this series. And check out Glitch for Platforms, where we’re building the first set of business analytics tools for Dev Rel professionals.