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Creating and running high-performance engineering teams


For the performance engineering teams to become a high-performing one, they need to define clear metrics for software quality, such as committed stories, production incidents, user experience, release quality, response time, and defect density. – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Creating and running high-performance engineering teams

Creating and Running High-Performance
Engineering Teams
Introduction There is a German proverb that
says, To aim is not enough, you must hit! One
might aim for excellence, but hitting the target
is a whole another story.  Traditionally, teams
measure their performance against the metric of
speed. As a matter of fact, speed is one of the
key factors causing the widespread adoption of
Agile and DevOps. Gargantuan projects run on
waterfall used to stretch for years, often going
over budget and failing to deliver on time.
Therefore, to improve performance and to resolve
these issues, speed or velocity emerged as the
obvious non-functional requirement. The faster
the releases are done, the better the
performance, right? Well, wrong!  Often,
the need for speed seems to dominate
the essentiality of quality in a software. The
software development teams compromise with the
overall quality of the release only to match the
determined criteria for speed. Doing releases in
the desired timeframe might appear to be a
qualified metric for performance assessment, but
in reality, it is highly superficial. If the
quality is not up to the expectations, it
will create negative customer experiences and
consequently, impacts business reputation. Speed
could be an appropriate metric to measure
maturity but falls short when it comes
to determining the value it offers to the
Forrester, in their latest report on Predictions
2020 DevOps, emphasized that business value
will overtake velocity as the preferred metric
among the DevOps teams. Now, it will no longer be
about how fast you are delivering. It will be
about how well you are delivering. The analyst
predicts, DevOps teams will increasingly prefer
outside-in metrics such as improved sales,
revenue, client retention, and customer
satisfaction to the inside-out measure of
velocity.    Such a critical shift awakens,
rather necessitates embracing a performance
engineering approach to ensure greater value to
all the stakeholders. For creating
high-performance software applications,
highperformance engineering teams are
required. What is a high-performance engineering 
team?  Professor Leigh Thompson defines a team
as a group of people who are interdependent with
respect to information, resources, knowledge, and
skills and who seek to combine their efforts to
achieve a common goal.  The performance
engineering approach in software development
shifts the focus on continuous quality. Performanc
e engineering teams test the software
applications proactively and pre-emptively. They
make sure that a software application performs hig
h against the non-functional requirements. 

  • There are some differentiating and defining
    characteristics which separate a general team
    from a high-performing team 
  • Trust and accountability High-performance teams
    are built on a culture of trust and
    accountability, where every member can openly
    express their ideas. 
  • Resilient mindsets Such teams know how to
    navigate around changes efficiently. 
  • Clear and shared vision The whole team share a
    common vision and work toward a common goal. 
  • Smooth communication A high-performing team
    ensure that information is communicated timely
    and clearly to every member 
  • Higher engagement Each member shows active
    participation while ensuring that everyone in the
    team is involved. 
  • Unambiguous metrics High-performance teams have
    clear metrics set for them. This helps them
    understand whether or not they are going in the
    right direction. 
  • Early conflict resolution A team delivering high
    performance does not let bad conflicts brew among
    them. They welcome disagreements and resolve
    conflicts as soon as they occur. 
  • Constructive feedback Constructive criticism is
    encouraged and used to improve their existing
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