What data are you not taking advantage of?

I just did two postings on how you need good metrics to help guide your management of systems.  They can be found here:

But what metrics should you be looking at?  Busy and productive are two different things. I don't know your business, but I can provide some suggestions I have used at multiple companies.  With today's economy all business are trying to do more with less.  Everyone is running as fast as possible.  But with all that running are we missing out on what is right in front of us?

  • Who is looking at your web logs?  What are your users doing on the site? How do your users really use the site?
  • If it is a SaaS solution you can still build in the functionality to track what users are doing.  
  • Are you using A|B testing to test the changes / updates you are working on?  Today there is no need to guess what works, you can measure it. Using real users.
  • Are you accurately tracking development hours so you know how long features are taking?  Are you comparing actuals back to the estimates? Don't tell me you are not balancing the investment (cost to build the feature) to the return!  No one has too much development capacity!
  • How about bugs?  Are you tracking bugs back to features? How about back to the development team?  Are you catching bugs early before the code is released to the users?
  • What about help desk tickets?  Are you seeing trends?  Something more systematic that should be addressed?
  • How about sales? Who is selling?  What are they selling? Where are they selling it?  Where do you see unexpected success?
  • How is your forecast?  Do you know what to expect next month or 3 months from now?  How are you making informed business decisions without a good forecast?
  • Are you measuring response rate?  Are your marketing messages resonating with you customers?  
  • How about your search engine rankings?  How well are you doing SEO?
  • What are your customers telling you?  Are you listening?  I wrote a whole post on these customer gifts.  And another on using Customer Support to help drive sales.

These are just a few areas where you could be looking at real numbers and making better decisions based on real data.  Not guesses…  So slow down for a second and think "what data do you have today that you are taking full advantage of?"   And what data should you be looking at?  

Author: yourcto

Senior Software Eng Exec / VP Product Management - LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/phillsea