Media: Tech Target
IT service providers employ methodologies, tools and platforms to keep initiatives on track. Their efforts aim to prevent projects from stalling before they deliver the goods.
Digital transformation projects often struggle to realize the promise of renewed business models, vastly improved efficiency and product innovation.
Service providers pursue several approaches that aim to rescue stalled transformation efforts — or keep them from bogging down in the first place. Here’s an overview of the methodologies, tools and technical platforms currently employed for reinvigorating a digital transformation strategy.
1. Agile and other methods
Consultancies often ply Agile and related methodologies to manage digital transformation. Those approaches seek to guide projects that may need to evolve as business conditions change.
“A good methodology, enabled by an effective tool, is essential,” said Sumeet Sabharwal, CEO at Netgain Technology, an MSP based in Lexington, Ky.
The company typically uses the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe), an approach for scaling Agile methodologies such as Scrum across an enterprise. Netgain employs SAFe in conjunction with Azure Boards, a Microsoft Azure DevOps service that provides dashboards and reports for planning and tracking projects. Azure Boards supports Scrum and Kanban among other Agile components.
Movate, a technology consulting and customer experience company based in Plano, Texas, uses methodologies and frameworks including Agile, Lean Six Sigma and the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK), which provides project management guidelines. Those methodologies combine with Movate’s focus on business, domain, culture and process aspects of transformation, noted Ajay Tyagi, executive vice president, digital, product and platform services at Movate.
If you don’t have the right priorities and you’re not aligned to the business drivers and objectives, it is one big lab experiment with many, many parts.
Movate, for example, uses Agile methodologies such as Scrum, Kanban and Lean to manage digital transformation projects, Tyagi said. “These methodologies emphasize iterative and incremental development, which helps teams respond quickly to changing requirements and adapt to evolving business needs,” he added.
Agile can facilitate digital transformation, encouraging smaller, more nimble initiatives as opposed to unwieldy megaprojects. Some IT leaders opt for Agile insteadof digital transformation as the way to weather quickly changing business cycles.
But Agile adherence, when mismanaged, can inadvertently produce the bloated projects it intends to prevent. Without a disciplined approach, organizations may cram together a multitude of development wish lists within an Agile program increment.
“Massive backlogs are getting stuffed into these 10-week cycles,” said Ricardo Madan, senior vice president of global technology services at TEKsystems, a business and technology solutions provider based in Hanover, Md.
Madan said SAFe-certified TEKsystems is an Agile-DevOps shop, but he warned against using that methodology without governance and clear priorities.
“If you don’t have the right priorities and you’re not aligned to the business drivers and objectives, it is one big lab experiment with many, many parts,” he said. “It’s Agile to nowhere.”