10 Metrics for a New CIOpost by Chris Curran on September 17, 2010
My friend Vinnie Mirchandani is advising a new CIO colleague who is looking for a short and hard-hitting list of IT metrics to start tracking. I’m a big believer in the less is more philosophy in terms of measurement.
Here are 10 IT metrics that I really like and that I think nicely balance strategic and tactical, apps and ops, projects and process:
- Multi-year view on productivity, something like (Discretionary IT Spend)/(Total IT Headcount). This could normalized it with some factor for “effective” discretionary spend assuming all projects are not 100% effective.
- Percentage of discretionary spend categorized by type. A few categorization models include - Run | Grow | Transform (Howard Rubin) - or Infrastructure | Transactional | Informational | Strategic (Peter Weill/MIT) and see if it matches where the business is headed.
- Number of bug fixes and enhancement requests for top 20 systems. This is a quick indication of functional and technical health of applications.
- Average hours/days to close critical/high support issues. You gotta get the platform stable before focusing on other stuff.
- Percentage of projects using enterprise HW/SW standards. This is a good way to make sure there isn’t a proliferation of exceptions, non standards, multiple “enterprise” standards.
- Number of hours/days of training per person/team/area. Training is an unbelievably neglected area in IT - this shows you care about your people.
- Number of projects in each phase of the SDLC and average times in each stage (view of overall project pipeline, identify bottlenecks, etc.)
- Some kind of customer/user measure if the company has any customers using an online channel - avg time on the site, top content viewed, top issues/comments, etc.
- Percentage of projects who deliver 100% of their planned scope or %scope delivered. On-time/on-budget doesn’t mean as much as “did i deliver what the business needed?”
- Core application availability (not technical SLA stuff, rather apps availability when users need it)
I think external and internal customer satisfaction is also very important. But, aside from a general customer satisfaction survey, I haven’t seen anything too innovative or useful. I’d be interested in any ideas you have on the customer sat front.
No matter what you measure, keep it simple. Get your measurements figured out first, forget any tools.