Discover Performance Blog

Welcome to the Discover Performance blog, a resource for enterprise IT leaders who share a passion for performing better. Here you’ll find strategic insights and best practices from your peers as well as from HP’s own practitioners who help others define, measure and achieve better IT performances.

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Management by Excel is dead: Welcome IT leaders


HippsPhoto.jpgBrad Hipps leads HP IT Performance Suite applications solutions marketing for HP. Before signing on with HP, he was senior vice president of service delivery for EzGov, a company that builds and manages enterprise web solutions for national governments. Previously, as a manager for Accenture, Brad worked on large-scale process re-engineering and systems development in the United States and Europe. He is the co-author of The Applications Handbook: A Guide to Mastering the Modern Application Lifecycle.




Spreadsheets are a legacy process—it’s what the average IT leader used when he managed his first application delivery project. But in today’s IT department, such legacy processes are just that: outdated methods that can’t hope to keep up with the new realities of application delivery.


What’s usually involved in getting a summary of program state? Typically it looks like this::   

  • Teams do the work, discuss it in status meetings, write emails about it, and then rather redundantly re-record it all in a time-tracking tool. The risk of inaccuracy is obvious.
  • Project managers, perhaps jointly with a PMO, work to assemble data from IT teams into a unified view while having to massage it into spreadsheets. These, in turn, are converted to charts and pasted into reports. This work takes hours if not days, resulting in outdated information by the time executive and project sponsors see it.


Are you measuring effort instead of progress?

There’s another challenge with the traditional approach to metrics gathering. While it may offer some grasp of classic benchmarks such as hours worked, it seldom accounts for metrics related to progress (e.g., percentage of requirements successfully tested). Progress metrics give reliable, real-time insight into work completed. Progress metrics – that reliable, real-time view into work completed – are imperative for organizations interested in modern KPIs such as velocity and nimbleness, crucial to evaluating enterprise agility.


Consider the following questions:

  1. How long does it take you to understand the state of work completed for any one program?
  2. 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, etc.)?
  3. What percentage of application defects leak into production?


If your answer is, “I’ll have to start a project in my PMO to find out,” then your organization should be looking for a better system.


Get a unifed view of performance

Enter the new Executive Scorecard for VP of Applications Edition, announced today at HP DISCOVER Vienna 2011. This performance management system provides more than 60 out-of-the-box KPIs, giving the VP of Apps a single, unified view into the performance of their organization.


The HP IT Performance Suite VP of Apps Edition is populated with information from HP Application Lifecycle Management (and optionally from HP Project and Portfolio Management Center, HP Performance Center and HP Application Performance Management  for expanded metrics). As teams progress, metrics on such work as requirements completed, tests run, defects closed, responses to product problems, and so on is aggregated and made immediately available in a single, unified view of total performance. With the Executive Scorecard VP of Apps Edition, applications executives can both anticipate problem areas and prove total performance to business sponsors.


Related link:

HP Application Lifecycle Management

The secrets for a high-performance application lifecycle revealed



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