I'll bet investors in Agilent Technologies (NYSE:A) are hoping that company executives are a bit more prompt about hitting their targets for spinoffs and restructuring than they were about starting their call Monday morning. I mean, it's one thing to start five minutes late, but it's quite another to start about 25 minutes after your scheduled time.

Having recently sold its semiconductor products business to private equity investors and a 47% stake in Lumileds to Philips (NYSE:PHG), this former Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) spinoff is well on its way to becoming a company focused on core measurement and test systems. In fact, all that really remains is the planned spinoff of the semiconductor test business.

The first quarter looks to have been a rather solid one for Agilent. Total revenue was up 10%, while orders climbed 15%. But assessing the net-income performance is complicated by gains and charges relating to the asset sales, planned spinoffs, and other assorted items. What's more, while the company provided an adjusted comparison -- earnings of $154 million versus $71 million -- the former number (this year's first quarter) excludes $36 million in stock compensation expense, and I'd argue that's a number just a little too big to ignore.

Performance among the units was a hodgepodge of good news and not-so-good news. While sales in the large-electronic-measurement business were up only slightly, income growth was strong, and the return on capital improved notably. Sales growth in bioanalytical measurement was a bit stronger, but the income growth was weaker, and the return on capital dropped a bit, though it was still at a very high level.

Even with rivals such as Tektronix (NYSE:TEK), National Instruments (NASDAQ:NATI), and Waters (NYSE:WAT) to contend with, Agilent has a very competitive measurement franchise. What's more, I think ongoing growth potential in the life-sciences side could help offset some of the cyclicality and the generally lower industry growth potential on the electronics side.

The biggest downside, though, is that none of this is really a surprise. Between announcing its restructuring and launching a sizable Dutch auction share repurchase, these shares have already had a heck of a run in the past year. Still, provided the company continues to produce such a high overall return on capital and generate ample free cash flow, the stock could continue to measure up for its owners.

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Fool contributor Stephen Simpson has no financial interest in any stocks mentioned (that means he's neither long nor short the shares).