This article explains how Green Effort estimate is calculated and how to customize the effort profile.

Not all Green Deficiencies are equal

When it comes to fixing things in your application that could be less environment friendly, not all deficiencies are equal. While you may have many small things which could be easily fixed (e.g. avoid using ‘System.gc’ and ‘Runtime.gc’), some other roadblocks are much more complex as they impact the different layers of an application and require more effort to fix (e.g., use a virtualized environment).

Additionally, for the same green deficiency pattern found in source code, the solution and/or the required effort to remediate it can be significantly different depending on the technology. This is why it is important to not only look at the number of occurrences of a Green Deficiency, but also the required effort to remove the deficiency occurrences. The result is a better approach to estimate, prioritize and plan the effective improvement tasks.

This is the purpose of the Green Effort Estimate feature in CAST Highlight.

How to use Green Effort estimates for planning

In addition to Green Impact scores and deficiencies and occurrences, you can see the effort estimate that it would take to remove all occurrences of Green Deficiencies in your application, expressed in person-days. The metric is available in the various dashboards where it makes sense: at the portfolio level in the Portfolio Advisor for Green by application, in Green Deficiencies, and naturally at the application level with all the details. It is also available from custom dashboards where you can use it as a tile, a metric in a data table, etc.


How Green Effort estimates are calculated?

The Green Effort estimate calculation is quite simple: CAST Highlight sums all triggered Green Deficiency occurrences x the unit remediation effort (e.g., 20 minutes to get rid of OPEN/CLOSE inside loops in Java).

You have a different effort estimate number? Customize the model

The Green Effort estimate feature comes with an out-of-the-box template with pre-defined values provided by CAST consultants. However, when it comes to agreeing on a level of effort for remediating deficiencies in a custom application, views may differ by organization, team, technology stack, development methodology, etc. This is why CAST Highlight allows users to define their own estimate for each Green Deficiency. Let us see how it works.

As a portfolio manager, you can easily customize the Green Effort Estimate model by editing it from MANAGE PORTFOLIO > Manage Green Effort:

  • You can see the list of all the Green Deficiency patterns with pre-defined effort values from CAST’s template
  • You can filter and customize each technology profile separately (as some simple deficiencies in Java may be harder to tackle in COBOL and Python or vice-versa)
  • Select the effort unit associated with the value you type (e.g. 10 minutes, 1 hour, 2 business days)
  • Once you are done editing the Green Effort Estimate model, save it and re-compute values for applications that were previously there to refresh the effort metrics.
  • A few minutes after, the new effort values are available for the different applications in your portfolio
  • In the dashboards, the estimates are translated in person / days, with 8 hours per day

Here we go, you are now ready to assess your plans and priorities with another facet of the Software Intelligence prism.