DORA Metrics: 4 Key Metrics for Improving DevOps Performance

The testing strategy should be strong, strict and wide enough to make sure any part of the code is tested well. Any potential bugs or mistakes should be identified in the pre-production phase by introducing debuggers or specific monitoring solutions. They can be the first person to respond to an issue, or even a rotating or permanent role. The incident commander is responsible for coordinating response activities and sharing information between team members. For example, many incident commanders will create temporary channels in Slack or Teams for each incident to streamline team collaboration. The table below is an example SPACE framework matrix, with metrics for each category.

They aren’t the be-all and end-all, so be sure to keep that in mind. If we go back to the customer who needs an urgent fix on their application, do you think they’re more likely to work with a high or low-performing team? While the answer might be based on many factors, it seems most likely that a customer would choose the quicker turnaround time and stick with the high-performing team.

What are DORA metrics

Slow builds and flaky tests can delay deployments or push teams to avoid deployments altogether. When deployments are needlessly complex, teams often wait to deploy code on specific days of the week with a dedicated deployment team—creating a significant choke point in the development pipeline. To measure lead time for changes, you would track the time between commit and its deployment.

Accelerate DORA metrics: How Opsera’s Insights tool helps you improve time to deploy and time to recover

Level of reliability incorporated into the software delivery process. The first key challenge is asking why you’re considering implementing DORA and what benefits your organization and customers will reap. Codefresh is the most trusted GitOps platform for cloud-native apps. It’s built what are the 4 dora metrics for devops on Argo for declarative continuous delivery, making modern software delivery possible at enterprise scale. In other words, for each deployment, you need to maintain a list of all the changes included in it, where each change is mapped back to the SHA identifier of a specific commit.

What are DORA metrics

With the list at your disposal, you can glean the timestamps and then calculate the median lead time for changes. The One DevOps Platform Value Stream Management provides end-to-end visibility to the entire software delivery lifecycle. This enables teams and managers to understand all aspects of productivity, quality, and delivery, without the “toolchain tax”. A lower Lead Time for Changes means that your team can release new features to market and deliver value to end users very quickly, giving your business a huge competitive advantage. The definition of lead time for change can also vary, which can create confusion within the industry.

DORA metrics and Value Stream Management

Deployment Frequency depicts the consistency and speed of software delivery. It determines whether a team is meeting goals of continuous delivery. DORA metrics make the process of software delivery more transparent and understandable, breaking it into pieces. DORA metrics give a high-level view of a team’s performance, allowing to assess how well the team balances speed and stability and spot areas for improvement. The most common way of measuring lead time is by comparing the time of the first commit of code for a given issue to the time of deployment. A more comprehensive method would be to compare the time that an issue is selected for development to the time of deployment.

In this situation, you’d want to slowly increase deployment frequency, while monitoring Change Failure Rate. If CFR begins to creep out of a good range, over 15%, then you should stop and address any issues with deployment or code review. If your team is performing in the low or medium range, it’s time to examine your processes to make sure code review is thorough and deployment is as automated as possible.

Measure DORA metrics without using GitLab CI/CD pipelines

It’s imperative to measure the value delivered by the new collaboration and culture. To retrieve metrics for change failure rate, use the GraphQL or the REST APIs. An incident is related to only one production deployment, and any production deployment is related to no more than one incident. To retrieve metrics for time to restore service, use the GraphQL or the REST APIs. An incident is related to only one production deployment, and any production deployment is related to no more than one incident). To retrieve metrics for deployment frequency, use the GraphQL or the REST APIs.

  • This looks at the ratio between how many times you’ve deployed and how many times those deployments are unsuccessful.
  • When properly implemented they help teams iterate on new features faster and with less risk when features are deployed behind feature flags.
  • As an example, consider a simple change to send a security alert email after users log in.
  • Use tools like Instatus, to keep your customers informed that a service is down and your team is working on it.
  • In the context of DORA Metrics, Abend-AID provides supporting data and helps seek out the root cause.

Join the Ship It Club to receive updates on development trends, productivity tips, and gain early access to DevCycle events and giveaways, shipped once a month. Time to Restore Service – average number of hours between the change in status to Degraded or Unhealthy after deployment, and back to Healthy. Software Deployment Fix deployment problems using modern strategies and best practices.

The DevOps Research and Assessment team has identified four metrics that measure DevOps performance. Using these metrics helps improve DevOps efficiency and communicate performance to business stakeholders, which can accelerate business results. Let’s look at each of the four key DORA metrics in detail to understand how they can help you measure your team’s performance. You have structural issues that prevent continuous development, like a customer base that can only accept changes once per quarter.

You might already be familiar with deployment frequency since it’s an essential metric in software production. Deployment frequency is about how frequently your organization or team deploys code changes to production. This ultimately reveals your team’s speed because it indicates how quickly your team delivers software. And while speed may be viewed in a positive light, it’s crucial to keep quality top of mind. Frequency matters, but you also want to deliver value to your users.

How to improve Change Lead Time

Lead Time for Changes allows us to understand what the DevOps team cycle time looks like, and how the team is handling an increased number of requests. Deploying often allows the team to constantly improve the product, and spot issues easier. At the highest level, Deployment Frequency and Lead Time for Changes measure velocity, while Change Failure Rate and Time to Restore Service ﹣ stability. Grammarly uses real-time data insights to power its high-growth business. Another challenge to implementing DORA is collecting and tagging data in such a way that’s usable for your teams. It’s critical for the longer term success of your engineering team and should be a high priority for Engineering Managers to execute.

Data-backed decisions are essential for driving better software delivery performance. DORA metrics give you an accurate assessment of your DevOps team’s productivity and the effectiveness of your software delivery practices and processes. Every DevOps team should strive to align software development with their organization’s business goals. DevOps metrics and KPIs are the quantifiable measures that directly reveal the performance of the DevOps initiatives. They help you gain visibility into the software development processes and accordingly identify areas of improvement.

MTTR is how long on average it takes for your team recover from that. At any software organization, DORA metrics are closely tied to value stream management. With proper value stream management, the various aspects of end-to-end software development are linked and measured to make sure the full value of a product or service reaches customers efficiently. Look, we know the software development process is not an easy one to measure and manage, particularly as it becomes more complex and more decentralized.

DORA continues to publish DevOps studies and reports for the general public, and supports the Google Cloud team to improve software delivery for Google customers. The Change Failure Rate is a calculation of the percentage of deployments causing a failure in production, and is found by dividing the number of incidents by the total number of deployments. This gives leaders insight into the quality of code being shipped and by extension, the amount of time the team spends fixing failures. Most DevOps teams can achieve a change failure rate between 0% and 15%.

What are DORA metrics

An incident must be both high-stakes and urgent to be considered a failure. To calculate MTTR, track the total time spent on unplanned outages then divide by the number of incidents. You can use these metrics together to see how your company performs relative to other successful DevOps companies. 11% of respondents were in the high category, 69% in the medium category, and 19% in the low category.

How to calculate Change Failure Rate?

Notably, the DORA research program provides an independent view into what practices and behaviors drive high performance in technology delivery and impact organizational outcomes. In order to calculate the mean time to restore, you need to know the time when the incident occurred and when it was addressed. You also need the time when the incident occurred and when a deployment addressed the issue. Over time, innumerable metrics and KPIs came into the limelight, pushing businesses into a corner on which metrics to track. Taking due heed of this challenge, Google Cloud’s DevOps Research and Assessment team has extended its support. Once you have implemented DevOps, it’s time to know whether it helped you gain value.

Change Failure Rate is simply the ratio of the number of deployments to the number of failures. This particular DORA metric will be unique to you, your team, and your service. The common mistake is to simply look at the total number of failures instead of the change failure rate. The problem with this is it will encourage the wrong type of behaviors. What you want, is when a failure happens, to be so small and so well understood that it’s not a big deal. The mean time to recover metric measures the amount of time it takes to restore service to your users after a failure.

How much developer time is diverted into tasks that don’t contribute to business value? Understanding the change failure rate helps leaders decide where to invest in infrastructure to support development teams. The idea comes from lean manufacturing practices, in which every step of the physical process is monitored to ensure the greatest efficiency. In terms of software delivery, multiple teams, tools and processes must connect with each other to gain clear visibility and insight into how value flows through from end to end. This means having a platform that scales easily and enables collaboration, while reducing risk. It means accessing metrics across various development teams and stages, and it means tracking throughput and stability related to product releases.

Practices to Improve Your DORA Metrics

Ultimately, the goal of measuring change failure rate is not to blame or shame teams; instead the goal is to learn from failure and build more resilient systems over time. MTTR, short for mean time to recovery and also known as time to restore service, is the time required to get an application back up and running after production downtime, degraded performance, or outage. It measures the average time between services failing and being restored, highlighting the lag between identifying and remediating issues in production.

And that strategy will differ if your starting pace is 16 minutes, 12 minutes, eight minutes, or sub-six. Allstacks provides multiple ways to customize and gain insight into your deployment frequency. For example, if a CTO wants to zoom out to a monthly overview of deployments in a DORA dashboard, they can use Allstacks to achieve that top-level view or analyze their deployments on a daily level. Both non-technical board members and highly-technical contributors should be able to understand and use the same language to assess the engineering team’s productivity.

Lead time for changes reflects the amount of time it takes for a commit to get into production. Most tools that measure DORA metrics are nothing but static dashboards. Swarmia not only tracks your DORA metrics but also helps you make long-lasting improvements based on them. To track DORA metrics in these cases, you can create a deployment record using the Deployments API. See also the documentation page for Track deployments of an external deployment tool.

DevOps Research and Assessment (DORA) metrics

Optimizing this metric is often neglected because too many teams assume a major outage will never happen. You may also have relatively few data points to work with if your service is generally stable. Running incident response rehearsals using techniques such as chaos testing can provide more meaningful data that’s representative of your current recovery time. Lead time is used to uncover inefficiencies as work moves between items. Although standards vary widely by industry and organization, a high average lead time can be indicative of internal friction and a poorly considered workflow. Extended lead times can also be caused by poorly performing developers producing low quality work as their first iteration on a task.