Johanna Rothman has posted about Measuring Productivity, and how it is difficult for managers. While Jack has a difficult time measuring knowledge workers in his post, The fun of productivity measures.
Measuring Software Projects
Johanna shows a simple way easy to measure a software project:
For software project teams, it’s easy: the number of running, tested features over time.
I have to disagree, this measurement will not really tell us anything as all features are not the same, one feature may take 1 week while the other 1 day, so the number will not really tell us anything.
Around 50% of the developers time is spent fixing bugs, and it takes just under 7 days to fix an application problem according to BMC.
As an old joke goes: If it is the QA’s job to remove bugs, it is the developments job to put them in.
I would think that a better measurement would be the time spent fixing bugs. Lets get that number as low as possible to measure the performance of software projects.
Both Johanna and Jack have a difficult time measuring managers. as Jack puts it:
how to turn these business-level measures into something useful for knowledge workers.
I have a very simple way to measure this and to turn the business goals into something that is useful to measure by.
Try it, it is simple and it works.
ps. measuring the bug-fix-time is actually measuring the integrity (wholeness) of the code. If the code has integrity, it should do what it was intended to do.