The achievement of quantifiable business impact is an essential goal of improvement activities in software development. Traditionally, a set of well-defined metrics built up a sound foundation for measuring the effects on business improvements before and afterwards. However, those metrics are not always equally applicable throughout all development methodologies, especially when moving from traditional (waterfall) towards agile development. Furthermore, some major impacts of improvement activities (e.g. customer satisfaction) might not be directly accessible with standard measurements. For this reason we suggest that opinion polls should supplement traditional metrics. Opinion polls fit perfectly into the idea of frequent feedback, given by customers as well as team members, that is an inherent part of agile processes. Thus, opinion polls are especially suitable for agile improvements. Adding subjectivity and the power of individual evaluation to objective metrics can help to analyze root causes that form the major levers for achieving business impact.
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