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Tempo Folio Tip of the Month: Measure the Actual Cost of Work on Bugs or Defects

When managing a portfolio or a project it is extremely beneficial to get an overview of your costs and status of a particular project or folio (a folio is essentially a project, but we use the term folio to avoid confusion with JIRA projects).

Did you know you can also view how much specific types of JIRA issues are costing you with Tempo Folio? You have probably wondered about the actual cost of the quality of your product. As a project manager or team lead, you might have had to explain why a project is taking a certain amount of time or why you need a certain number of staff members allocated to it. With Tempo Folio for JIRA you can actually see, in real time, how much fixing bugs or defects is costing you.

Issue Cost Reports

Seeing the effort and cost spent fixing issues within Tempo Folio is actually quite simple. You just go into the folio you wish to take a look at and go into the reports section, by clicking "Report" on the top righthand side of the overview screen.

Tempo Folio- Overview Reports

You’re then presented with a list of different reports. From there you go to the “Issue Costs Report” at the bottom right side and click on “Show Report”.

Tempo Folio: Issue Costs Report

Here you can filter the view according to different types of JIRA issues. For this example, we will uncheck everything but “bug”, just as you can see in the orange box in the below screenshot.


Tempo Folio: Issue Cost Report: Bugs

When deciding how much effort and cost is being spent fixing bugs, you will want to refer only to the “Effort” and “Effort Cost” sections of the report, highlighted below.

Tempo Folio: Issue Cost Report- Effort Cost

In the above scenario, you can see that two hours have been spent fixing this folio’s bugs at this point in time, making the cost $86 USD (currency is the same as the set currency for the portfolio).

Provide Better Information

So how exactly does this benefit project management?

Being able to easily see and report the effort time and effort cost spent on different kinds of issues allows you to give better information both to the people you report to and your clients.  Let’s say you have a team working on developing something that is seemingly very simple, but you’re utilizing a certain number of staff and taking longer than what is seemingly necessary.

In a situation like this, you would be able to show your superior or client precisely why it is taking x amount of time and costing x amount of money, giving them better information about the actual cost of work to ensure great quality.

This, of course, also works the other way around. You might see that you don’t need as much time or as many resources for a given project as you originally thought, which allows you to reallocate those resources to other projects.

Make Better Decisions

This kind of information also greatly helps to make better decisions. If a team is spending a lot of time fixing bugs, it could signal that something with the development process needs to be addressed to improve the quality of the code. Perhaps QA needs to get involved earlier within a sprint, or maybe the testing process isn’t sufficient and could be improved. Either way, identifying this allows you to address these issues.

Information from previous projects can also greatly aid in better anticipating the amount of time and resources you will need for a similar upcoming project.

[tweetme]When your estimates are closer to reality, then your clients and superiors are happy. #JIRA[/tweetme]

Making better decisions can also directly affect employee satisfaction. A team is much more likely to be content in their daily work if their efforts are noticed and their time is allocated properly.


[callout class="tip"]Since the release of Tempo Folio 10.4, it is now possible to filter all reports by Tempo Account or custom fields added in your folio's configuration. These added features allow you to customize the issue cost report (and all others) even further and view the cost of issues on multiple levels. [/callout]


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