How is Cycle Time Calculated?

How is Cycle Time Calculated

Cycle time calculates the average time it takes for engineering tasks to go through the different phases of the software delivery process, from the first code commit to code release (LinearB breaks this work into 4 phases: coding time, pickup time, review time, and deploy time). Being able to quickly iterate and push code to production is a valuable indicator of team performance and productivity. Cycle time is calculated by combining the average time recorded for each phase of work. This allows you to see where bottlenecks and slowdowns are occurring in your development process

What Is Coding Time?

This measures the time between the first commit made to a branch to when a pull request is submitted.

What Is Pickup Time?

This measures the time between a pull request is issued and a code review is started.

What is Review Time?

This measures the time between when code review(s) have begun and when a PR is merged. The first comment of a code review will change the pull request state to "In Review" and begin review time.

What is Deploy Time?

This measures the time between when a PR is merged, and when it is released. LinearB listens for release tags and maps these tagged releases back to branches. You can customize how LinearB detects a code release, instructions can be found here.

Things to know about Cycle Time

Cycle time tracks all work for a given iteration or date-range.

Since we sum the average cycle-time by phase, carryover and incomplete branches are included in your cycle time. For example, during a sprint you may work on 5 branches, 2 branches progress through to code review, and 3 additional branches are deployed. When cycle time is calculated, the time spent in coding time and pickup time for the 2 unreleased branches will be included in your cycle time calculation, as well as the time spent through all phases of development for your 3 deployed branches.

Cycle time does not track individual performance.

Development is a team effort. Regardless of if 1 team member or 3 work on a branch, cycle time is based on the progress of the branch as a whole.

Branch progress is not counted in cycle time until a phase is complete.

Our cycle time metric does not calculate time spent in a phase until the phase is complete. For example, LinearB will not include the coding time of a project until a pull review is submitted. A project that is taking a long time in any phase will not affect the overall cycle time calculation until that phase completes. You may occasionally see jumps in your cycle time calculation if a long-running coding project, or hanging review, finally gets picked up and the time spend in that phase is added to your average calculation.

Average Cycle Time: Dashboard View

From the main dashboard page, you can see the cycle time for your whole organization. Here, cycle time is being calculated using active branch data for the iteration or date range which the dashboard is displaying. The colors of these segments range from green to red based on community benchmarks.

Change your dashboard to see different teams activity or different time-frames in order to see cycle time calculations specific to your teams or iterations. Selecting a team will calculate cycle-time for branches which members of the selected team have worked on (committed code, created pull requests, submitted code reviews).

Individual Branch Cycle Time: Activity View

Click on the Activity tab to see a cycle time breakdown of individual branches. The colors of these segments range from green to red based on community benchmarks. Cycle time here is calculated using the timestamps as an individual branch moves from coding to deploy.

Cycle Time Over Time: Metrics View

From the Metrics tab, click on the Delivery dashboard to see a breakdown of your cycle-time over time. You can also add a cycle time widget to any of your custom reporting dashboards. You can focus a metrics report on specific teams, and also customize the date range displayed. The delivery dashboard will break out overall cycle time, and also show you individual breakdowns of coding time, pickup time, review time, and deploy time.

Learn More

Check out the below blog posts to see more information about cycle time.

Streamlined Engineering Data Leads To 55% Decrease In Cycle Time At Intsights

What is Cycle Time?

Cycle Time: Measuring And Improving Team Process

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