What Does Benchmarking Mean?

Benchmarking refers to testing a product or service against a reference point to quantify how much better or worse it is compared to other products. Benchmarking is the standard way of comparing one product to another. With technology in particular, benchmarking against competing products is often the only way to get an objective measure of quality. This is because many tech products increase rapidly in measures such as speed and storage size when compared to the previous version from the same company, making comparisons between the versions virtually useless.


Techopedia Explains Benchmarking

For example, the capabilities of a computer may be benchmarked by running a standardized torture test. In a broader sense, a company may be benchmarked against all other companies in its industry for a specific criteria like product support.

Benchmarking has several nuances in IT:

  • Benchmarking hardware means that it is tested against other hardware doing the same task to see whether it is faster or slower.
  • Benchmarking an application usually means measuring the number of features and their quality compared to similar applications.
  • Benchmarking in development means setting timelines and milestones by which the project’s progress can be tracked.
  • Benchmarking software is software that helps measure the performance of hardware or software.

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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…