Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Enterprise Calendar Metrics: The View from 10,000 Meters

Our last post was a start at getting at what kinds of time-based information is in Microsoft Exchange / Office 365 calendars that can help you get a hand on what is going on in your organization.

We want to draw the distinction between time management (something individuals either do or not do for their personal schedules) and calendar metrics (something you can read from the aggregated calendar data in your Microsoft Exchange server).

Here we'll start taking a look at some of the global reports you can extract that enable some insight on what your corporation is doing.

Some data we extracted a while ago generated the following results:

Not surprising (to anybody who's worked in an organization with more than fifty people) the number of meetings drops at lunchtime.  We interpret this as people wanting to get some private time, but any anthropologist out there will ask how we normalized our results, set up proper controls, and did double-blind studies.  None of us are anthropologists.  What is more interesting to you the manager are the twin peaks of mid-morning and mid-afternoon for the most popular meeting time.  Plan your resource use accordingly.

The outlying time of midnight - 1 AM we think was either security or manufacturing.

Which hour do people meet leads to the question which DAY is favored.  In the above report we found that meeting frequency peaks on Tuesday.  In LOTS of both legacy and Exchange data we have seen Wednesday and Thursday being the peak, but almost never Monday or Friday.

For the true calendar cartographer a totally nerdy but relevant question is: what kinds of recurrence patterns are established in my organization?  While recurring meetings and appointments are really neat, there data shows that the majority of meeting objects (we'll get to that in the next sentence) are one-time.  But I said objects.  So a weekly meeting counts as ONE object even if it occurs 52 times in the course of a year.

These combined with lists of the top users of calendar functionality are a good place to start to get a handle around enterprise-level metrics.

What can we do about individual resource metrics?

So glad you asked.  Hang on for the next post.

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