The Quantitative Relationship between Overtime, Defects, and Project Slippage


With Mark Layton, CST®Founder of Platinum Edge

In this presentation, Mark C. Layton, CST®, founder of Platinum Edge, discussed why people who work overtime produce more defects, which causes more work and more defects. Attendees learned how to break the cycle of turning talent into cannon fodder.

Racing in Reverse takeaways included:

  • Eight-hour days produce between 16% and 20% higher total output than nine-hour days.
  • Correcting defects is between 6.5 times and 100 times more expensive than
    preventing them.
  • Eliminating overtime reduces defects by 93%. 


Mark C. Layton, known globally as Mr. Agile®, is an organizational strategist and PMI certification instructor with more than 20 years in the project/program management field. He is the Los Angeles chair for the Agile Leadership Network; is the author of the international Scrum for Dummies and Agile Project Management for Dummies series; and is the founder of Platinum Edge, LLC, an organizational improvement company that supports businesses making the Waterfall-to-Agile transition.

Prior to founding Platinum Edge in 2001, Mark developed his expertise as a consulting firm executive, program management coach, and in-the-trenches project leader. He also spent 11 years as a cryptographic specialist for the U.S. Air Force, where he earned both Commendation and Achievement medals for his accomplishments.

Mark holds MBAs from the University of California, Los Angeles, and the National University of Singapore; a BSc (summa cum laude) in behavioral science from University of La Verne; and an A.S. in electronic systems from the Air Force’s Air College. He is also a Distinguished Graduate of the Air Force’s Leadership School, a Certified Scrum Trainer® (CST), a certified Project Management Professional (PMP), a recipient of Stanford University’s advanced project management certification (SCPM), and a certified Scaled Agile Framework Program Consultant (SAFe SPC).

Mark is a frequent speaker on Lean, Scrum, XP, and other Agile solutions.