Let’s bring back Reviewers of Day!
Reviewer of Day - person who has the daily duty to review unmerged PRs and help getting them moved forward. The main goal this is trying to achieve is to reduce the time between PR creation and merging and overall improve our efficiency and satisfaction, by attempting to identify and address the bottlenecks and blind alleys in the process.
We had this experiment when we introduced RODs a while ago. The immediate reason was to improve the PR lifecycle, reduce the unmerged backlog, regressions and the dreaded rebasing with conflicts. The experiment was largely successful, but at some point we dropped the idea - I think largely because a lot of the routine ROD-ing tasks were taken over by various github bots.
Right now we’re in a much better shape with respect to PR flow, but still at the time of this writing there are 31 unmerged PRs and PR review ceremony is cited as one of the top reasons causing discomfort to the contributors.
So, I say let’s bring the RODs back then and try to unclog things again. Off the top of my head, listing some of the tasks we could do daily to improve the PR flow:
- Assign reviewers to PRs without any assigned
- If familiar with the code, review the PR yourself (really review, don’t just “green” it)
- Take a look at the stale PRs. Is there any chance they might still be merged? If yes, try pinging whoever can make it happen. If not, just close it off - politely, but confidently.
- Take a note whenever you notice that something can be improved in the PR flow - e.g. can anything else be automated with a bot, can we enforce the squashing rule automatically, can we add meaningful PR checklists?
- PR flow health greatly depends on automated testing - help with e2e test blockers, either by fixing them yourself or by pinging whoever can
I’ll start by volunteering for status-react on say Mondays. Anyone wants to help me fill this plan fully?
Enlist now - you know you want to!