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7 Creative Ideas To Measure Developer Productivity

The only way to truly know how productive your team is, is to track it using metrics. Unlike metrics that track sales figures and customer turnover , productivity metrics measure activities like the planned-to-completed ratios for your tasks. After all, knowing how well your employees are performing their tasks is essential if you want your business to run smoothly. There are probably cloud business solutions a large number of factors influencing the programming productivity of individuals and teams. For example, the used software development process probably influences the effectiveness and efficiency of a team. AIP may be used at any point of development for numerous languages and technologies. It is the only software productivity measurement solution offering these capabilities.

how to measure productivity in software development

Even though this score should be stable, the company’s services must be flexible to achieve the highest satisfaction of each client. Each pull request will remain open until colleagues have provided feedback and a manager marks it as closed. The personalities of software programmers influence the used coding styles which, in turn, influence the productivity of the programmers. However, across the various disciplines different notions and, particularly, different measurement units for input and output can be found. The manufacturing industry typically uses a straightforward relation between the number of units produced and the number of units consumed. Non-manufacturing industries usually use man-hours or similar units to enable comparison between outputs and inputs.

Get Metrics In The Conversation

I’m not even a developer myself and I know that trying to understand productivity by simply measuring lines of code is a terrible idea. With the right tools and the right data, we can understand the overall effectiveness of a development team and their ability to produce results. A recent entrant in the performance metrics space is Code Climate, which launchedVelocity in 2018. As of early 2019, the v2 launch of Velocity is now the focus of the Code Climate homepage, Application software supplanting their long-popular code quality tools. This placement suggests that Code Climate expects Velocity to be the primary focus of their company moving forward. In terms of data sources, Pluralsight sources fairly evenly betweencommits,issues, and lines of code. We havewritten about the perils of these data sources elsewhere.Like GitClear, Pluralsight offers an on-prem version for enterprise-sized customers, although prices are higher for on-prem installs.

You need to resolve this trust issue before it consumes you. I’ve seen this happen with several of my peers, who were managers or senior managers in an organization that wanted to be a tech company but was missing tech leadership. They hired tech leaders, only to report to non-technical people, who failed to give trust upfront.

Why Measuring Software Engineering Productivity Is So Painful

The biggest benefit to measuring employee efficiency is in longitudinal reporting, where you calculate efficiency over a phase of system development life cycle period of time. This allows you to identify trends that may impact how you organize staff, or hire and remove employees.

As with the other possible metrics for developer productivity, you want to ensure that the product you deliver to the client is of the highest possible quality. But a low lead time with a superior end-result can help you to understand more about the developer productivity of your team. But, if the tasks are written properly, and they are assigned in terms of business priority, then measuring closed tickets may be a metric for you to consider when measuring developer productivity. If more tickets are being closed, team development process then you may be able to infer that the project is moving along well. Additionally, when stakeholders and project managers start looking at estimation as a point of measurement for productivity, Parkinson’s law starts to take over. On the other side, stakeholders may make unnecessary demands or developers may be more optimistic than they should have been. Not only is tracking hours a poor way to measure developer productivity, but large numbers of hours can actually lead to a decrease in productivity.


But as with the measures discussed above, this one’s most obvious failing is that it doesn’t capture anything truly meaningful to the business or its customers. Would you discipline a highly productive developer because they spend a lot of time on Reddit or don’t move their mouse enough? Would you promote a developer because they spend a lot of time typing in Visual Studio, even if they’re difficult to work with? Some managers apparently best software development company do, but hopefully most of us are smarter than that. In any case, we can add these measures to our list of ineffective proxies. Measuring productivity in terms of bugs fixed, tasks completed, or features shipped is equally futile, if marginally more difficult to game. A good team may be able to ignore your measures and just work, but even in the best of circumstances a bad measure is a hindrance that’s hard to ignore.

  • Measuring and calculating your team’s productivity, just like you do with sales and revenue figures, is the only way to know if they’re reaching their full potential.
  • However, many companies will have to establish these benchmarks themselves.
  • A metric that incentivizes Engineers to be less productive is obviously flawed.
  • If it was early enough in their history, you probably weren’t impressed.
  • We place special attention on how long each assignment takes to be completed.
  • To be fair, with most forms of social identity and mental attributes, using a binary category to describe a person falls flat- it should be mostly used for relative measurements.
  • You can’t review code that doesn’t exist, so tickets are presumably moving forward.

Each team should set their own targets for each of these process measures and then be evaluated based on their performance relative cloud computing deployment models to their targets. One team might have a goal of 24 hours for code review turnaround time, while another might have 36 hours.

Use Development Productivity Measures To Improve Productivity

It’s also another way to understand your team’s current speed for different tasks by breaking the total throughput down to median time by status or issue type. You can pin down the exact bottlenecks affecting the team’s performance and set more accurate expectations.

how to measure productivity in software development

Be careful though, code review is a time-consuming process and returns little value if the developers in question go through the motions and don’t take the required time to understand the code correctly. Does the developer deliver on what they say they will provide regularly? If you have a team of people who frequently meet or exceed expectations, you know they’re working well together. Measuring closed tickets is an excellent how to measure productivity in software development metric if the tasks are written well and assigned based on business priority. When more tickets get closed, more good things are happening with the project, be that bugs getting closed off or features made. The days of lines of code defining developer productivity are thankfully a distant memory for most of us. One person may complete a size-two story in five hours, whereas it may take another developer nine hours.

Implementing Development Metrics

GitClear will, by default, value removed code just as highly as added code. Thus, experienced Senior Engineers, who often create great value by removing code to simplify the code base, are rewarded handsomely for their efforts. While working from home yields a neutral result on productivity, it has positive implications on morale, so this experiment is now ensconced as our company policy. Being able to run interesting experiments like this is a cornerstone of the well-measured company. “code activity.” This is why GitClear’s on-site header links to a version of this article that refers to “code activity.” If you are really good with estimations, you are a bad software developer. Even at 80 hours a week, a commit every 17 minutes is completely unrealistic for a single person.

For certain businesses, delivery speed would be the most important. For others, following the specifications would be of greater importance. In the end, it all depends on the type of software you write. It is typically represented by the units of work the team has completed within a set period of time.

What To Measure With Software Development Productivity & Quality Metrics

There’s even more agile software quality metrics you can choose to track. But at the end of the day, you should not get sidetracked from your main goal – deliver value and remain fair to your engineering team and clients.

how to measure productivity in software development

The cold hard truth is, your team isn’t working every second of their day. When you’re choosing the productivity metrics you want to use, you need to take this into account. First, you need to choose the productivity metrics that make sense for your business goals. Our development teams conveniently use a range of metrics that help them coordinate the work and deliver the top-quality products in time. With iteration flow, you can visualize how the status of your tickets changed over a certain period of time. This view can help you gauge whether or not the repeatability and health of your development processes is affecting your time to delivery.

Why Do We Need To Measure?

One of our customers is a large food processor that produces packaged vegetable products. They have roughly 200 employees per shift, working 16 equipment driven production lines and approximately how to measure productivity in software development 1000 different product SKUs. The problem with number of commits is that doesn’t tell you actual value delivered. Demo ratings don’t necessarily reflect the quality of the product itself.

Did anyone else do the math on the 14,489 commits per year Tweet? If we assume that’s a normal 2080 hours a year (which I’m guessing it probably isn’t), that’s an average of almost 7 commits an hour, or 1 commit about every 8.5 minutes. I hope that’s for a team, a massively large project, or even multiple projects, not a single dev.

Cycle Time