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How do you measure developer productivity in your team?

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codemouse92 profile image
Jason C. McDonald • Edited

I try to apply Quantified Task Management, which I specifically designed for this purpose. Code is incredibly subjective, but I believe tasks can be boiled down to four measurements:

  • Priority: How soon?
  • Gravity: How important?
  • Friction: How much help is available?
  • Relativity: How unpredictable?

If you compare the averages of these measures, for all tasks a developer has completed in a given time frame, it gives a pretty good picture...

Tasks Av. G Av. P Av. F Description
5 4.2 1.6 1.6 Important (but probably easy) overall accomplishments, though few of them needed to be done now. A good week’s work.
5 1.6 4.2 1.6 The tasks were urgent right now, but not important in the big scheme of things. Probably easy. A good week’s work.
5 3 3 4.6 Moderately important tasks, all extremely difficult. A HUGE accomplishment.
20 1 1 1 A lot of tasks were done, but none were very urgent or important, and all were really easy. Not as impressive as the task count seems., in practice, I don't really apply this as much as I should. Shame on me. :\

ibibgor profile image

While I heard the first time about this practice and think it's interesting, I wonder how help you give to coworkers will get into account.
In practice I find myself often helping other developers out, answering their questions and peer work with them.

codemouse92 profile image
Jason C. McDonald

That's a good point, and I haven't thought about it. I think it usually doesn't factor in too much, as only one person (two in pair programming) is going to actually be doing the coding. Anyway, if someone spends all their time helping everyone else to the exclusion of their own work, that's a problem. In a team dynamic where help is mutual, it should all even out.

That said, perhaps as a metric, half of the points could be granted to someone who helps significantly? It's definitely harder to measure.