Lagging and leading indicators

Last post 05:07 pm November 8, 2019
by Fernando Cano García
3 replies
05:50 pm November 6, 2019


I've confusion about the concept of lagging and leading regarding indicators. I know Cycle time is a lagging indicator, it's known when the element is ended. Work item age is leading indicator, you can know how is respect the average of the cycle.

Others indicadors:

Is it WIP leading indicator similar to work item age?, but Are throughtput and service level expectation lagging indicator as Cycle Time?





06:15 pm November 6, 2019

There's a good explanation of these within the EBM Guide if you'd like to check that out. 

Throughput could fall under a leading / lagging depending on how often you're measuring it and what you're using the data for. If I'm looking backwards to determine my average throughput it becomes a lagging indicator. If I'm looking at my throughput each day it becomes a leading. 

I wouldn't have typically thought of an SLE as an indicator in and of itself. Perhaps the ratio in which you meet a given SLE could become leading or lagging. 

09:38 pm November 6, 2019

Is it WIP leading indicator similar to work item age?

How do you measure it? If you can see inside to count WIP, it will be a leading indicator, since there is no delay. If you have to apply Little’s Law then the measurement will lag.

04:57 pm November 8, 2019

Thanks Tony and Ian. I¡ve got some ideas from your comments.