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Has the ‘new normal’ affected key delivery and engineering metrics?

Michael Wong, April 8, 2020

As modern technology organisations, it’s unsurprising that all of Plandek’s clients have now been exclusively working remotely for the last 3-4 weeks. What is more surprising is that on the whole, we are seeing very little detriment in the core Agile delivery and engineering metrics that we provide.

Organisations and their teams have experienced disruption beyond any expectation. Indeed we are all having to adapt quickly to the ‘new normal’ our world has now become. Clearly remote working has been used to great success for many companies previously, but for teams and whole departments to evolve to fully remote working relatively seamlessly is very impressive!

We are lucky here at Plandek to have the data to support that view and provide more detail on 3 core areas below.

Lead Time

The amount of time a ticket spends from the start of a process until the very end when value is created for our customers. Such a pure metric for software delivery teams, and first on our list to see how this metric had fared in these recent times. There were a few overs and unders across our data sets, but clearly the overall trend was flat and Lead Times (as well as Cycle Times) had been maintained against previous levels.

Some organisations have even seen improvements during this unsettled time


We looked at both throughput of Story Points (for teams that use them) and the number of ‘Feature’ tickets (the ones that create value) completed over time. Again, overall numbers remained fairly flat, although some of the companies we work with did observe a small dip for a couple of weeks during March. As can be seen below the dip looks to have recovered, and we’ll be monitoring closely in the coming weeks.

A large publishing and analytics company saw a small dip during March


One of our key Quality metrics is First Time Pass Rate. How often do tickets move through a workflow in a single one-directional flow, from left to right, without regressing backward causing rework. Our clients find this a great indicator of both efficiency and quality, and they were pleased to see that the disruption experienced over the past few weeks has not had any significant effect on this metric. Teams seem to be adapting well and maintaining high-quality standards.

Overall trend for First Time Pass Rate remained flat across out client base

So amongst all the LinkedIn anecdotes about how well or not we are all dealing with the ‘new normal’, here at Plandek we feel fortunate to be able to provide actual measurement of Agile delivery and engineering capabilities for organisations who know the importance of data, especially during these uncertain times.

We are even more pleased to see, from the data, that teams we support are clearly coping incredibly well, and have no doubt that by continuing to focus on their key metrics they can drive continuous improvement 📊


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