Haystack vs. Code Climate Velocity

A Code Climate Alternative

Haystack or Code Climate?

Both Haystack and Code Climate Velocity surface metrics to drive continuous improvements in developer teams. These metrics include Cycle Time, Change Failure Rate and Deployment Count.

Haystack provides superior alerting to prevent issues before they materialise and uses only proven metrics rather than selling snake oil.

Acting Too Late?

Haystack provides real-time alerts to prevent issues before they happen. Using Slack and email notifications, the team can be alerted to risk factors like stuck Pull Requests or potential burnout before they become issues.

Code Climate instead only provides metrics once the damage is done. Code Climate will help you measure slower delivery and drops in productivity, but won't do so before these issues materialise. What this means is your team will be subject to ever greater frustration as issues are only addressed late in 1:1s and retrospective meetings.

No Snake Oil

At Haystack Analytics, we only provide software engineering metrics that are proven to help teams - either through our own validation or empirical scientific evaluation.

For example; our North Star metrics include the Four Key Metrics. Rigorous appraisal of these Four Key Metrics (in research led by Dr Nicole Forsgren) has shown that higher performers are 2x more likely to meet their commercial goals (productivity, profitability, market share, number of customers) and their non-commercial goals (quantity of products or services, operating efficiency, customer satisfaction, quality of products or services and achieving organisational or mission goals). Indeed, companies which do well under these DevOps metrics have a 50% higher market cap growth over 3 years. The mechanics of how metrics drive organisational performance is also well understood and has been rationalised by industry leaders like Martin Fowler.

Unfortunately, many of our competitors don't apply the same level of rigour to validating their metrics. Indeed, in many cases unvalidated metrics may prove harmful and actively damage your organisation.

Code Climate Velocity contains a metric known as "rework", this is defined as "how much of their own code an individual contributor edits within three weeks after pushing". Not only have we seen no evidence that such a metric will actually help your organisation, it appears to fly in the face of the evidence we have on the importance of lowering Cycle Time.

Companies with lower Cycle Time (time from development to code in production) are able to rapidly test ideas to gain quick customer feedback, resulting in product that is more likely to satisfy a customer. If you test something and your customers don't like it - you should be able to remove it without being punished for increasing some meaningless "churn" metric.

Code Climate Velocity also allows the tracking of individual engineer performance using metrics like "Coding Days" and also allows Project Management data to be imported from tools like JIRA. Research has shown that Project Micromanagement practices can be harmful to your team and therefore is not surfaced in Haystack.


Haystack has a dedicated support team of experienced engineering leaders available on-demand from our Slack Community. Every Haystack user has a dedicated private slack channel with our team of experts to help you deep dive into your data and teach you how to improve delivery. 

Code Climate provides a dedicated support staff for users subscribed to their enterprise tier.


Haystack is available from just $20 per developer a month when paid annually or a start-up plan is available from $30 per developer a month with no annual commitments required. Scale discounts are available for larger teams.

Velocity requires contracts to be locked in for an annual rate of $449 per developer a year for their entry level pricing.

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