The topic of metrics and insights for developer contributions and performance is, let's say, awkward. Especially at performance review time. That's where Swarmia comes in.
Their new feature, Developer Overview, offers insights in three areas: Activity, Focus and Pull Requests. All with the aim of answering the question "what have I worked on?" Or, for managers, "what have my team worked on?"
If this sounds a bit creepy and overlord-ey, it isn't meant to. According to Swarmia, Developer Overview is meant to serve the needs of everyone involved in the development process - from individual team members, to managers, to colleagues.
At an individual level Developer Overview aims to help developers understand if they're working on the things they really want to work on. And, of course, learn from the things they're working on. To make those promotion or raise arguments that little bit easier.
It's also a nice way to provide accountability at an individual level. Opening more PRs than you've reviewed is probably not the fairest or best way to collaborate with those on your team. But - with everything else going on - it might be hard to even know you're doing it.
For managers Developer Overview is a new way to objectively evaluate the performance of developers on your team. Not based on the number of lines of code or PR throughput - Swarmia call those out as specific non-goals. Developer Overview instead offers more insight on the level of, and type of, collaboration between developers. And the impact of those collaborations on successful projects.
Swarmia Developer Overview feels like a uniquely additive product in the developer tools arena. It encourages collaboration, creates personal accountability, and should serve developers well when pushing for that promotion or raise.