3 progress metrics you need for managing applications development teams

dpblogpromo.jpgIf your applications department is like many, your teams are creating sophisticated apps to power the business. But the tools you use to manage the department are cumbersome spreadsheets.


Legacy tools and processes bedevil the modern apps executive. Just look at what’s usually involved in getting a summary of program state:


  • Teams do the work (which includes discussing it in meetings and email) and then redundantly record it in a time tracking tool, risking errors.
  • Project managers take this data and massage it into spreadsheets, which can then be converted into charts for reports, which are outdated by the time they’re published.

All this takes valuable time away from work that could add value to the enterprise.


The problem with traditional approaches to gathering metrics is that they focus too much on effort expended rather than progress achieved. Yet progress metrics (reliable, real-time views into work completed toward goals) are essential for organizations tracking key performance indicators (KPIs) and evaluating agility. 


A lack of real-time visibility into operations slows down the decision-making process, and ultimately slows the ability of execs to deliver business value.  


Consider the following questions to understand your grasp of progress metrics:


  • How long does it take you to understand the state of work completed for any one program?
  • What is the average duration to change a single line of code and deploy it to production—including modifying the necessary project assets (tests, user stories)?
  • What percent of application defects leak into production?

If you can’t answer these questions easily, you need to look at your system for managing performance.

Apps organizations need performance systems that provide the kind of in-context visibility that a manual system can’t. That means refining the systems you have now, understanding where they aren’t getting the job done anymore, and investing in new solutions.


Discover Performance has a new article that looks at criteria that can help you improve application management by looking at your performance management system. Developed specifically for IT leaders, Discover Performance focuses on delivering actionable insights from peers, thought leaders and industry analysts, to help you turn IT performance into business success. Join Discover Performance for IT Leaders.


To see how your application delivery organization measures up, take our Application Executive Assessment. For more on managing the logistical complexities of large teams and modern development demands, see the Application Lifecycle Management page.

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About the Author
I'm the community manager for Discover Performance and have been a writer/editor in the technology field for several years.

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