Engineering Organization Assessment: Making Use of Slides for Accurate Measurements

Measuring Engineering Organizations: Key Takeaways from a CTO Talk

Recently, I had the opportunity to give a 30-minute talk to CTOs and VP Engineerings in San Francisco about measuring engineering organizations. This talk was essentially based on my blog post “Measuring Engineering Organizations” and I have also shared my slides for reference.

The Importance of Measurement

One of the key takeaways from the talk was that measurement is essential to educate you and your audience about the area being measured. Even flawed measures can be very effective educators. So, don’t get caught up on not measuring things because they have some flaws; instead, let your audience learn about those flaws.

Instrumentation: Cost vs. Benefit

Another important point that I discussed was the cost of instrumentation. Instrumentation is costly to implement, so it is important to let specific problems guide you to instrumentation rather than instrumenting widely without a clear goal.

The Amazon Approach: Does It Work Everywhere?

Many new companies follow Amazon’s approach to metrics, but that does not necessarily work for everyone. It is important to remember that every organization has its own unique goals, problems, and culture. So, simply copying someone else’s approach may not be the best solution.

The Role of Trust

I also talked about trust. If teams do not trust each other before you have metrics, they probably won’t trust each other after. It is important to keep in mind that metrics are implicitly objective, but there are many judgment choices within selection and measurement.


In conclusion, measuring engineering organizations is critical to success, but it is important to approach it with a nuanced perspective. Don’t fall into the trap of blindly following metrics or copying someone else’s approach. Rather, take the time to understand your own unique needs and find the best solution for your organization.

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