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Incident User Metric (How big was it really?)

The Incident User Metric (IUM) is a mechanism to measure incident in an objective manner and which will allow problem managers to classify these as either minor, normal or major. Most incidents that effect a significant amount of IT customers are potential major incidents. What constitutes a major incident and what does not? The key is in the IUM. After a large enough sample pool has been built (> 10 incidents) the average is calculated. Minor incident is an incident where the IUM is less than 40% of the norm. Major incident is an incident where the IUM is greater than 40% of the norm. Normal incident is an incident that is within 40% of the norm.

This metric is determined in the following manner:
  • What is the opportunity cost to the company of 1 minutes outage based on the effect on productivity? (or put another way, what is the total salary bill of the company for 1 minute?)‏
  • What was the length of the outage?
  • What percentage of the IT customer population was impacted?
  • Is it a lesser multiplier? (Liability, scrutiny by management, internal process, company’s image)‏.
  • Length of outage * population impacted * opportunity cost * (multiplier) = INCIDENT USER METRIC.
Read more about the major incident process (MIP) here.


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