The Hidden Value of Data-Driven Development
In our personal and professional lives, we often think our explanation of why we didn’t do something will do the trick, but that’s rarely the case. Nobody wants to hear excuses, reasons, or circumstances.
As it turned out, the app was booting slowly for those employees, so while they were waiting for the app to boot, they often got distracted by other tasks.
As it turned out, this client felt they weren’t getting the results they wanted, and it was starting to erode the trust. Jesse quickly turned around the development team to focus on the immediate task of speeding up the start time, taking care to document their research and development so they could share the results with the client.
Jesse started with the APM and Kibana data, shown below. It turned out, of course, that the customer was correct and the startup time was slow. The first finding was that the average duration for calling the “SubscribeApple” function was taking 1,126 milliseconds, and for some users, the time was more than triple that: 3,592 milliseconds. That’s certainly enough time for a user to get distracted or frustrated and close the app. If they were just using it to photograph one receipt, well, it’s easy to see why they didn’t bother to wait for the app to boot up. In fact, as shown in the “Impact” column below, this issue has a very high impact on the overall operation of the application.
Similarly, trust is built up over time, building proofs that a team can deliver, that they tell the truth, and that they treat others well. A common language - particularly a data-driven language - builds that trust similarly. By showing the incremental changes on a week-by-week basis, service providers build the trust of those they serve. By viewing the same statistics, we can ensure that we are communicating about the same problems, or, if we aren’t, we can look at other ways to address the problem.
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Disclaimer: The story is a fictionalized account to protect our client, but the statistics from APM and Kibana are real data from a real project.
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