Team Health Metrics
Paychex began its Agile transformation in 2014. Over the past five years, they matured and scaled their Agile processes across 120+ teams and substantially improved their overall portfolio performance.
How did they do this? By utilizing health metrics and dashboards.
Their dashboards combine:
• AgilityHealth® TeamHealth Radar
• Jira data
Paychex was able to evaluate at the following levels:
This approach was valuable because it offered actionable insights and they could manage team health daily.
Let’s take a look at what each dashboard provided.
• Indicated how the teams feel
• Team assessments every six months
• Team metrics/maturity
• Team triangle score – how leadership is doing
PPM data dashboard
• Facts about the team
• Team stability
• Team-led staffing
• Overtime percentages
Jira data dashboard
• How the team is performing
• Defect count
• Story commit to complete
• Points commit to complete
Standards & messaging
Successfully collecting metrics across 120 teams requires deploying some basic standards without hurting culture.
- Two-week sprint calendar
- Consistent Jira usage (story pointing, sprint start/close)
- Enterprise DoD/DoR
Initial roll-out of standards taught Paychex some lessons: to include intent as part of the message, and roadshows and smaller sessions were more valuable than large audience presentations.
• Teams reviewed after each sprint
• Set expectations and growth priorities
• Set stage for escalation discussions
• Rollup and individual teams reviewed monthly
• Enterprise trend analysis and recommended actions reviewed with CIO quarterly
• Backlog readiness example
• Feedback showed strong correlation between PO scores and commit to complete
• Supported by AgilityHealth feedback
• Actions taken
• Updated definition of ready
• Backlog training for all Product Owners
• New metric on backlog readiness
Keys to Success
• Culture needs to support the mindset that team health is as important as project execution
• Standardization of key principles ( sprint cycle, DoD, DoR, Sprint planning) and tool use is required
• Formalize expectations regarding dashboard review cycles should be formalized
• Rollout needs to explain the value of dashboards to teams and programs
• Full support from senior management is needed
• Continuous feedback/adjustments/enhancements