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How Service Catalog Increases Productivity

Max Tilka2021-10-01

How a Service Catalog Increases Productivity

Productivity is defined by measuring the amount of output over a given time frame. However, this discounts the quality of output, which is crucial in moving toward a more complete definition of productivity.

Relating to services, increases in productivity generally highlight the amount of feature releases over time. This leaves out the critical measurement of quality compared to quantity.

This is where a Service Catalog can greatly enhance true productivity within an engineering organization. As systems become more complex over time, productivity can take a serious hit. Implementing a Service Catalog can substantially increase productivity when performing incident response or onboarding teams.

Response Productivity

Every company has to respond to major incidents, it’s a fact of life when developing. Imagine a scenario with an engineer that has no context about the service they are responding to. They resolve the incident within minutes with a band-aid solution and everyone is happy with a quick resolution. But in a few weeks, this incident could reemerge due to the previously implemented short-term solution.

Having a Service Catalog in place with the most current information on the impacted service would provide context for a more permanent solution. Though this solution may take more time, the downstream outcome of preventing future incidents allows engineers to focus on higher priority work with greater customer impact. Productivity is then shifted towards revenue-generating feature work.

Team Productivity

A team of 10 engineers needs a Service Catalog to be able to grow into a team of 100 engineers. Providing context on the complex architecture being built—while handling the ability for everyone to code in the same space—is very difficult. Having an organized space of services with accessible discoverability can showcase service dependencies and how to work through them. This can allow you to plan better quality service work and give time back from missing dependency mishaps later in development.

A Service Catalog for new team members can provide a quick path to understanding the new space of services they’ll interact with on a daily basis. Productivity in terms of output will not be seen immediately; having a Service Catalog upfront will set a foundation for better learning and will bring massive returns in productivity toward a team member’s future growth. A new team member could be trained in just a few days and already making their first few commits. But the quality of those commits is pivotal. Releasing quickly—but going back for more production changes—is not optimal productivity. With a Service Catalog, a new engineer can be more productive with their onboarding. This means less time retracing steps and relearning processes on services, as well as time taken away from other engineers tasked with reteaching those beginning steps.

Productivity revolves around quality. A Service Catalog helps promote this quality. So as your company strives to move faster, make sure quality moves with you.

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