We have a quarterly metric meeting and I report the metrics for all of our production SQL Servers. The people that are looking at these reports are mostly management (some technical, but others are not so much) and want to see a nice overall picture of the performance of the SQL Servers, but I really don't want to give the generic metrics of CPU, number of db, disk space usage, etc.

Currently, I have some numbers like average batches per database, restore time for databases and I do have the number of databases (even though I said I really didn't want that one).

Any suggestions on other metrics that may be interesting to show managment that would be easy for them to understand and actually show the health of the SQL Servers?

closed as primarily opinion-based by MDCCL, Tony Hinkle, LowlyDBA, Erik Darling, John Eisbrener May 3 at 18:24

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • 4
    Shouldn't you ask your management what topics they are interested in? "average batches per database, restore time for databases" don't look like useful metrics from the management point of view. – mustaccio May 3 at 17:58
  • I have asked managment and the answer has generally been "whatever you think" and I ask about every time we have the metric meeting. So I guess they are fine with what I have reported, but I really would like to expand a little more without being too generic, but interesting nonetheless. – Jason Ford May 3 at 18:04
  • Backup status--they should be more interested in that than anything else. If they don't know what they want, then you can stick with things that they should understand like CPU usage and disk space. If they want to pretend to be technical, just give them stuff that has no "correct" value, like batches/sec, transactions/sec. etc. – Tony Hinkle May 3 at 18:06
  • 1
    @TonyHinkle good advice if your goal is for the management to stop listening to what you're saying and eventually dismiss you altogether (until the moment things go south). – mustaccio May 3 at 18:09
  • 2
    Why not report on numbers that relate to your job function? If you report on metrics you don't understand because someone here told you to, how would you explain them? – Erik Darling May 3 at 18:12

If as you say your management don't give you clear directions, I think it gives you an opportunity to be proactive and show them you're worth more than they're currently paying you. Listen to other people reporting their metrics and figure out what management feels is important from the business perspective.

"X batches per second"? Meh. "My databases can support up to x online orders per second with current hardware; this meets our peak workload of y orders per second on Black Friday". Sounds useful.

"Backup status"? Meh. "If hardware fails, we'll be able to be back online in Z minutes". Sounds useful.

  • 1
    I would also focus on comparative metrics. How did you do last measurement vs. current? Uptime (hopefully 100%). Number of incidents (hopefully none). Average time for queries (trend, are they taking longer times, or are they in the OK range). Reports impacting performance (usually batch reports that should run overnight and not during production hours). Status of backups (X taken during the month, current frequency, errors if any). Status of recovery test (a couple at least per quarter?) Storage situation (are you OK, or you'll need to buy more soon). Any actions taken during the period. – Luis Alberto Barandiaran May 3 at 19:42

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.