I’m very pleased to announce that we’ve been included in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Agile Planning Tools as the top visionary offering a comprehensive solution for large-scale organizations aspiring to embrace Agile and DevOps. This is the first time we’ve been included in a Gartner Magic Quadrant, and we are honored that we’ve been chosen for such a prestigious position.
Innovation. Speed. Quality. Value. Today’s tech savvy customers demand these from the companies they support. If your organization can’t deliver on those expectations, consumers are just a single mouse click away from another company that can fill their order in a millisecond. Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon, put it this way; “Our customers are loyal to us right up until the second somebody offers them a better service.” When scaling Agile in your transforming organization, you need to be fully confident in the repeatable robustitude* of your delivery pipeline. The principles surrounding DevOps (people, process and technology), play a key role in that journey, and front and center is automation around testing, continuous integration, and continuous delivery.
Now that January is behind us and I have been able to read up on all the latest predictions for digital transformation in 2018, I wanted to highlight some of my favorites that resonated with me and I think they will resonate with you also.
- By the End of 2019, DX Spending Will Reach $1.7 Trillion Worldwide, a 42% Increase from 2017 –IDC Top 10 Worldwide Digital Transformation (DX) Predictions
- By 2019, All Digitally Transformed Organizations Will Generate at Least 45% of Their Revenue from "Future of Commerce" Business Models - IDC Top 10 Worldwide Digital Transformation (DX) Predictions
- 20% of CEOs will fail to act: As a result, those firms will be acquired or begin to perish. –Forrester 2018 Predictions – A Year of Reckoning
- By 2020, five of the top seven digital giants will willfully "self-disrupt" to create their next leadership opportunity. Gartner Top Strategic Predictions for 2018 and Beyond/ Pace Yourself, for Sanity's Sake
- Individuals are increasingly asserting their desire to communicate and collaborate however they want, using their choice of tools. Employees ─ particularly millennials don’t just prefer to use their own devices, they also want to use their own applications. –Dimension Data Top IT Trends for 2018: digital workplaces
- Digital disruptions … show no sign of being reduced in frequency or impact. Instead, those who seek value from technology-based options must move faster as their bimodal IT efforts move into high gear. – Gartner Top Strategic Predictions for 2018 and Beyond/ Pace Yourself, for Sanity's Sake
- Over the next 18 to 24 months, we will likely see CIOs begin reengineering not only their IT shops but, more broadly, their approaches to technology. – Deloitte Insights Tech Trends 2018 - The symphonic enterprise
- By 2020, we expect that the ‘new normal’ operating model will be customer- and context-cantered. That is, companies will change the way they interact with their customers based on the context of the exchange. They will offer a seamless omnichannel experience, through a smart balance of human and machines.- Financial services technology 2020 and beyond: Embracing disruption
- Seventy percent of healthcare companies are looking to digitize their operations in order to facilitate growth. While healthcare organizations see the value of digitalization, just 3 percent have completed digital transformations across their enterprises, while 54 percent of the organizations are testing or piloting digital transformation programs. - SAP Digital Transformation Executive Study: “4 Ways Leaders Set Themselves Apart"
- And one last one from me - 2018 will be the first year AI is truly harnessed in large scale enterprises to optimize software delivery and accelerate digital transformation.
It’s like that time you saw that gorgeous 1968 Alfa Romeo Giulietta for sale on Craigslist – truly a thing of beauty, with all the bells and whistles one could want. It even has a brand-new paint job, new aftermarket headlights, and a cool new stereo. The owner is selling it for dirt cheap, and insists it’s ready to go, . It’s like the mythical Craig of Craigslist crawled right in your head, figured out your dream car and plopped it right into your search results. Excitedly, you mention it to your favorite uncle, who happens to be a very smart, old school auto mechanic.
There is no clear-cut prescription or magic bullets in agile transformations. It is hard to do and rarely done well. However, realization and ultimately success comes to those with a willingness to accept change and incorporate learning to improve and move their maturity forward. Transformation is a moving target and it constantly forces you to deal with the unpleasant and uncomfortable emotions associated with change. Throughout the course of 8 years, I have had the opportunity of seeing customers adopt and scale their people, work and time to find some repeatable pattern of sustainable innovation. The top 6 challenges I observed were common and spanned across all clients, industries and roles. -
I recently caught the new article in CIO magazine on how Principal Financial Group made the leap to transform their organization to Agile for digital development. [i] First of all, kudos to the Principal Financial team for recognizing the importance of switching from Waterfall to Agile development. For a company with over 2,600 IT professionals just making that decision to begin the transformation is a significant accomplishment.
As shared in the article, Principal realized that in order to deliver what their insurance, retirement planning and asset management customers needed, they couldn’t continue to follow the Waterfall path any longer. Instead of waiting for the “perfect app” to be produced, they made the decision that Agile was the only clear path forward. Principal didn’t just transform their processes to improve overall productivity, they went all in. They implemented hackathons to kick start new projects, shifted to bi-weekly sprints instead of every other month meetings, implemented new tools to help accelerate the transformation and even reconfigured their office space to promote collaboration among IT.
With the rich advantages of implementing an Agile workplace like faster feedback cycles, problems identified earlier on, higher potential for customer satisfaction, faster time to market and more, I am still surprised how often I encounter a large enterprise that is hesitant to go all in with Agile.
Principal is leading the way by aligning corporate strategy with the execution of the development teams to drive strategic value. The Principal team didn’t stop there; they go well beyond that. Not only do they understand the importance of leveraging Agile principles, but they also clearly understand the critical need to supplement Agile execution of the teams with effective management/oversight/rollups at the Program, Portfolio and Enterprise levels.
Here is the realization that every large enterprise will reach sooner or later… You, Company XYZ, are now a software company. Embrace this and vow to be excellent at building software or risk letting others gain the competitive advantage.
A quote shared in the article from Principal CIO Gary Scholten summed it up best. "I don't know how you could be successful in the digital world in waterfall." We don’t either.
At AgileCraft, we deliver the most comprehensive software solution available for scaling agile to the enterprise. AgileCraft transforms the way organizations enable and manage agile productivity across their enterprise, portfolios, programs, and teams by aligning business strategy with technical execution. To find out more visit us at www.agilecraft.com or follow us on twitter @theagilecraft or download our latest whitepaper An Insider's Perspective: Bank of America.