Measurement Is Not Cost-Neutral

Resources may be re-allocated away from productive staff and toward efforts to measure that staff’s output.

The cost of pursuing precise metrics may itself be wasteful, as the pursuit of accuracy may require effort beyond what would otherwise be considered “good enough.”

Measurement is not cost-neutral; it requires effort and investment. Sometimes these costs are difficult to calculate.

We gather performance data for its own sake: the effort of gathering data becomes a proxy for the work the data supposedly measures.



Muller, Jerry Z. The Tyranny of Metrics. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2018.