What Metrics to Track for a Successful DevOps Project

DevOps offers faster and more reliable software development and release cycles, ensuring a higher quality product and easier resolution of any problems along the way. Because of these advantages, companies know—anecdotally, at least—how DevOps can improve their business, and yet they still struggle to identify clear evidence to support the strategy.

Why is this, exactly? In many cases, it comes down to not measuring the right metrics against the goals. So today, let’s look at performance metrics in DevOps that are reliable ways to prove business value.

The Impact of DevOps

DevOps can be loosely defined as anything related to monitoring or deploying applications. However, many organizations say that it’s all about collaboration and team culture, and that’s largely true.

DevOps gives teams the advantage of accomplishing their individual goals with the support of a multi-disciplinary team. This model enables them to remove barriers and almost entirely self-service to deliver code as quickly and accurately as possible.

Goals and Metrics: What DevOps Measures

In DevOps, we focus on continuous delivery, so everything moves quite fast. Here are a few of the key metrics you can track:

  • Deployment frequency
  • Deployment time
  • Change volumes
  • Lead time
  • Customer tickets
  • Availability
  • Service level agreements (SLAs)
  • Error rates
  • Deployment failures
  • Application usage
  • Application performance
  • Mean time to detection (MTTD)
  • Mean time to recovery (MTTR)

By applying these metrics, you’ll be able to determine just how quickly you can work before things start going south.

Of course, what you track should tie specifically into your business goals. For example, if the goal is to increase customer satisfaction, you’d want to see a reduction in the number of customer tickets. If you want to reduce the cost of development, you’ll want to minimize your mean time to recover/restore, and you’ll also need to look at your availability and deployment success rate.

Four Performance Metrics To Level Up Your Software Development Team

Once you have identified your specific business goals, you’ll need to connect them to specific metrics or outcomes to understand their impact.

Speed and Stability

In a general sense, DevOps measures speed and stability. Each is a metric that supports and enables the other, so you don’t have to sacrifice either to achieve your goals. In other words—focusing on speed should support stability and vice-versa.

Speed measures your time-to-value, which is a high priority in many industry niches, including finance and ecommerce. Some of the things that can impact speed include:

  • Deployment frequency, measured as a percentage of your total opportunities to deploy. So, for example, if there are 12 deployment windows in a week and you only deploy three, that gives you a 25% deployment frequency.
  • Stability considers availability and quality. If you work in a high-compliance industry, like healthcare, stability might be more critical, whereas, in finance, you might want to strike a balance between stability and speed. Typical stability metrics include MTTR, change success/failure rate, and total production incidents. As the DevOps team matures, you can expect these numbers to improve.

Proving ROI in Service of the Business

Proving DevOps ROI can be challenging, but if you understand the business goals and track the right metrics, you can implement ways to improve. With a continuous commitment to improvement, your team will help you deliver measurable business value.

LDXLab leverages a DevOps approach, providing the experience, expertise, and commitment you need to help you achieve your business objectives. Reach out today; we’d love to learn about your project and show you how we can help.