Throughput or Productivity?

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Summary:

I’m tech-editing an article for the Agile Journal. I’m having a discussion with the author about the words “productivity” and “throughput.”

I believe that what we measure in agile teams is throughput, the number of features through the team over time. I don’t think we measure productivity, the number of features per person or per team over time.

In kanban, it’s quite clear. We measure throughput. To me, it’s clear in iterations, too. We measure throughput.

I’m tech-editing an article for the Agile Journal. I’m having a discussion with the author about the words “productivity” and “throughput.”

I believe that what we measure in agile teams is throughput, the number of features through the team over time. I don’t think we measure productivity, the number of features per person or per team over time.

In kanban, it’s quite clear. We measure throughput. To me, it’s clear in iterations, too. We measure throughput.

The author likes the word “productivity.” I don’t :-) And, the author is a smart cookie. We’re still in tech-edit, and we have more to do, and the author will win, when push comes to shove.

It’s a very subtle distinction. What do you think? Throughput or productivity? Productivity or throughput? Which one?

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