Continuous Improvement by 6 Value Streams in Digital Transformation [#ContinuousImprovement #ValueStreams #DigitalTransformation]
- Continuous build and test
- Continuous deployment
- Predictive service management
- Continuous feedback
1. Continuous build and test
Continuous build and test revolves around the concept of continuous integration. By now, most organizations have adopted the strategies that are endemic to Agile: prioritizing features, creating source code, and continuously testing, all in an iterative cycle.
But what happens to this process on an enterprise scale?
Organizations need to find ways to standardize this process across the many development teams that make up the enterprise. You must efficiently reuse resources and code across teams, centrally manage user needs, and continuously test security across the enterprise.
2. Continuous deployment
Continuous deployment is already part of the IT4IT architecture, but many organizations struggle because they have trouble understanding over the long run what they have released, and where and when they released it.
Putting a product into production is easy, but maintaining that product three years down the line can get complicated, especially if you are maintaining multiple versions on a global scale.
How do you patch each of those individual versions?
What are the dependencies of each product with other products?
Monitoring the entire application complex is easy on a small scale, but difficult on a large one, particularly as time goes on.
3. Predictive service management
Once you are done with continuous deployment, you still need to maintain the products. DevOps groups often have a developer who takes on an informal role of monitoring and patching applications. But that does not work in the long run, and it does not work at scale.
Yes, we know that real DevOps requires dev to work with ops, but the reality is that most DevOps teams are really led by developers, and those dev teams often circumvent working with traditional operations.
To overcome that, and to streamline managing services in production, you need an efficient and consistent way to perform predictive service management. This needs to happen from a single, centralized console, where all products can be monitored according to the service level they have to deliver.
This centralized monitoring must be predictive in nature, and it must be able to perform risk assessment based on the business importance of the individual services that are monitored.
4. Continuous feedback
Another key element of digital transformation is the ability to collect feedback and successfully deliver it to the appropriate people.
Rarely is this process consistently managed in the organization, but it is critical to develop a system to efficiently and automatically collect feedback generated by your predictive service management operation including operations and help desk groups. Then you need to feed it to the product team to incorporate into continuous development efforts.
Even better, consider conveying this feedback further back up the line to the planning organization, to aid it with prioritization and future product design efforts.
5. Continuous exploration
This complements continuous feedback, and has several starting points. It revolves primarily around the challenges inherent in any enterprise that has several thousand products or applications running at any given time.
Managing such a portfolio and understanding where it needs shoring up is complicated. As a result, a yearly planning cycle is not going to be successful here.
You need to put your business in the mode of continuous exploration, creating a back-and-forth between what is being developed and what business is requesting. This will give you the ability to constantly revise the scope and budget being assigned to various development teams, all while taking into account user feedback.
True Agile development should not be constrained by a Waterfall-like planning process.
6. Service onboarding and consumption
When you deploy a product, you are really deploying a system that allows for the consumption of services. Users are not really asking for a product; they are asking for a way to do something, such as send an email or pay an invoice.
That is why organizations need a centralized catalog of these services: so that users can easily find and consume those services.
When a customer or employee is consuming a service, the catalog lets you understand who owns that service and its current state, and allows you to monitor its use. Many organizations skip this step altogether. They just put services into production, and the services become available to everyone, with no oversight or accountability.
6 key value streams that drive digital transformation: