Deployment Frequency: Shine a Light on DevOps Performance

Do you know how to track your DevOps performance deployment frequency (DF) or what it is? It’s a critical metric that indicates how your throughput performs during your product and/or project development process. 

In fact, DF is one of the main measurements in which elite DevOps performers shine by deploying 46 times more frequently compared to low-performers, according to the latest DORA Accelerate: State of the DevOps 2018 report.

There are different ways to track deployment frequency. One way is to get notified by Jenkins each time it runs a deployment job successfully and enter this data in a spreadsheet manually. This, however, is cumbersome and error-prone.

Alternatively, you can set up automatic tracking in minutes using CloudBees DevOptics; value streams. It is as simple as configuring one deployment gate in a value stream and then letting CloudBees DevOptics do the rest. Each time your deployment job runs successfully, CloudBees DevOptics keeps track of it and shows you your deployment frequency. You can even see your deployment frequency over different time frames.

Let me walk you through how to set up a single gate value stream in order to track your deployment frequency.

Step 1: Create a value stream

Click on the Create your first Value Stream… or Create New button to open the Value Stream editor.

You are now in the visual editor. You will see a value stream with three gates and three phases. The last gate (highlighted in the image below) is slightly different. It’s a deployment gate. This is the gate you will configure so that you can track your deployment frequency.

Step 2: Configure the deployment gate

Configuring a gate involves a simple step of mapping it to the underlying Jenkins deployment job.  Let’s see how.

Click on the gate and then click on the gear icon to configure the gate.

Give the gate a name e.g. Production deploy. Also, select a master and then select the deployment job from the master.  Ensure that the box labeled This is a deployment job is checked. Now Save this configuration

You will now see that the configured gate is checked. This means that the gate is mapped to the Jenkins job. Don’t worry about configuring the other two gates. We do not need to configure them for this exercise.

Give a name to your value stream e.g My Value Stream and then Save your changes

Step 3: Perform deployments

Once your value stream is saved successfully, go ahead and run the Jenkins job a couple of times. You will see that each time the job runs successfully, CloudBees DevOptics keeps track of that and then shows you the deployment frequency. You will have to click on the Production deploy gate in order to see deployment frequency.

If you had more than one value stream, you could see the deployment frequency of all of them. Click on the value stream icon on the left menu bar to see the value stream list. You can see your value stream in the list and the deployment frequency for that value stream.

Congratulations, you have setup CloudBees DevOptics to successfully track the deployment frequency. The longer you track it, the better you will be able to measure our throughput over time. Deployment Frequency is one of four key metrics organizations should be tracking along with Mean Lead Time, Mean Time To Recover and Change Failure Rate.  The importance for tracking these metrics is critical to know if your organization is improving DevOps performance.

Use DevOptics free and schedule a demo

If you’re not already using CloudBees DevOptics, I encourage you to register and get  CloudBees DevOptics CD Platform Monitoring free for life. To  get access to the value streams functionality and get a demo, click here

Additional resources