What to spend your last two weeks at a job doing

So, you've given your notice at your job. Now what? First off, stop coding. That's right. Finish whatever small task you're currently working on, but for the love of god, stop writing more bugs. Of course, you want to get your manager's sign-off on this, but in my experience managers generally accept that pumping out just one more feature before you leave isn't the best use of your time.

So, what can you do to be useful?

Write Documentation

Do you remember what documentation is? It's that thing that nobody ever produces. You know, the stuff you wish you had when you started this job, and inherited a mess of legacy code? (Every developer thinks that code they didn't write sucks. The next guy is going to think you're code sucks. He's probably going to lobby to re-write the whole damn thing.) Wouldn't it be nice if he had a road map to work with?

Never having written any documentation, some developers find themselves at a loss about WHAT exactly they should be documenting. Maybe this will give you a starting point.

  • Bookmarks
  • Integrations with other systems
  • Your new contact information
  • How to create a new development environment from scratch
  • How you deploy code
  • Production redundancy configuration
  • Schema migrations
  • How to run any unit or automation tests
  • How you typically debug the code, tools, etc
  • Incident reports for past outages
  • How the internationalization and localization happens
  • Network diagrams
  • A high level description of how all the pieces fit together
  • Any reporting, especially random SQL scripts that are not in source control
  • Any scheduled tasks that are running, expecially cron jobs not in source control
  • How settings, entitlements and permissions work
  • Anything you did that was "tricky"


I'm currently working at NerdWallet, a startup in San Francisco trying to bring clarity to all of life's financial decisions. We're hiring like crazy. Hit me up on Twitter, I would love to talk.

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