In today’s world, businesses depend heavily on software to continuously provide top-notch features and updates to remain competitive. CIOs feel immense pressure to deliver high business value in shorter time frames while optimizing costs and talent. However, there is no one-size-fits-all strategy for success, so many organizations fall short in their quest for efficiency and business value.
One strategy is to focus on customer needs and satisfaction by providing the best value in top quality and reliable software as fast as possible. This entails continuously improving your CI/CD pipelines, your DevOps teams’ performance, and ultimately your entire deployment process. But it’s easier said than done, and transforming your delivery process to align with your business goals is a complex endeavor. To this effect, value stream management is a great way to gain end-to-end visibility over your entire value streams. This will allow you to promote a culture of continuous improvement and optimizing flow efficiency by using actual collected data instead of guesswork.
Value streams refer to the sequence of tasks and activities that a company performs to fulfill customer requests. Value stream management aligns business objectives with the deployment process in a customer-centric approach that prioritizes delivering better value to customers faster.
Implementing value stream management is easier when using value stream management platforms (VSMPs). These help you have end-to-end visibility of your deployment process and teams’ activity and performance that will influence productivity and overall efficiency. Waydev uses complex metrics to provide deep-insight into the flow efficiency. This encourages data-based decision-making and better control over the entire software delivery process, leading to the desired business outcomes and better value for customers.
In a software development environment, value streams can be defined as the steps taken to convert a business idea into digitally enabled solutions to answer customers’ requests. How you get from the concept phase to delivery can be organized in development value streams (DVS) – a series of activities that organize the workflows, the processes, the tools, and the people involved to create value for customers.
DVS are generally compatible with an Agile environment and with DevOps teams because both encourage high performance at a fast pace. Value stream characteristics include:
Implementing this management model is no easy task, and it takes skilled executives to make the transition between a traditional approach and a more efficiency-driven one designed to keep up with the ever-changing tech industry.
Value stream management enables companies to improve the workflow in software delivery and gain visibility of the interconnected value streams throughout their project. By implementing value stream management, organizations foster environments where teams may work efficiently, focusing their efforts on what works while looking at the software development lifecycle from the stakeholder’s perspective.
Implementing value stream management in your organization is a complex process that entails transitioning from a traditional approach to an updated one – from a Waterfall approach, where the teams are siloed, with many dependencies, to a customer-centric approach in Agile that encourages a more collaborative and transparent delivery process.
Here is how to implement value stream management:
Here is a guideline of what a successfully implemented value stream management model looks like:
To measure their organizations’ results, value stream managers assess the entire software delivery process, from idea to production, to identify potential silos, bottlenecks, and inefficiencies. Once these are evaluated, the intelligence obtained may be used to optimize processes and contribute to the organization’s overall digital transformation. But to do that, they need proper tools with useful metrics – these are value stream management platforms.
Waydev does just that by enabling tech leads to improve software delivery processes, providing full, accurate reports that are automatically generated, such as:
Implementing value stream management as a business model can positively impact your organization and streamline your operations. Here is a list of the main benefits you can get from value stream management:
An important step in promoting continuous improvement to your tech organization is identifying silos where teams work isolated from each other and from the overall business objectives and the big picture. This doesn’t help both production and workflows, so finding a better model that streamlines operations is crucial. Implementing value stream management enables CIOs to take measures to make the SDLC process more transparent.
This helps teams see their codebase, PRs, and tickets from sprint to sprint more clearly, and it fosters a more collaborative environment. The high level of visibility offered by value stream management software enables each professional to understand how their work affects others and that cross-functional teams can thrive, as it creates a culture where people collaborate to deliver the utmost value. To review the effectiveness of the collaboration stream between engineers, Waydev’s Review Collaboration Report provides engineering leaders with complex data on who reviews whose PRs, who reviewed the most/least PRs, and who submitted the most/least PRs.
By mapping value streams and analyzing their organization’s end-to-end process of delivering value, tech leaders know how long it takes to deliver value to customers, making it easier to create benchmarks and compare projects and work overtime from one sprint to another.Having a value stream manager job means ensuring that organizations have the necessary information to continuously improve their performance, identify areas that lack efficiency, and manage end-user expectations. With platforms like Waydev, you can automatically gather all the data you need for setting realistic OKRs for your teams’ work and performance.
An important role of value stream management is to identify any activity that doesn’t add value to the customer experience or product but instead consumes resources. Value stream managers have a clear view of each step involved in SDLC, from initial business ideas to delivering value to customers. This enables them to identify problem areas that waste resources in terms of time, and money spent, such as too many dependencies, too many steps in handoffs, and insufficient automation and testing that allow too many bugs and downtime.
Focusing on value streams in software development inevitably leads to a focus on DevOps. While having CI/CD in place is the first step towards elite performance, a well-defined value stream management will give CIOs a clear understanding of important metrics like deployment frequency, lead time to changes, mean time to recovery, or change failure rate – in short, the DORA metrics. Measuring even the slightest improvements in DevOps journeys can be complicated, but Waydev enables you to filter DORA metrics, tracking delivery performance across master, development, or QA giving you clarity on each value stream.
While the value stream management model brings many advantages and positive impacts to your organization, implementing it comes with its set of challenges. After all, changing and aligning your organization to business trends is not always easy.
Here are some of the most common challenges with implementing value stream management in your tech business:
Value stream management fosters a culture of continuous improvement, where the goal is optimizing your workflows and practices to maximize customer value. But in order to improve a concept, you need to break it down into clear elements and use data to measure it and compare results over time. This helps you understand whether the performance and efficiency are improving over time or if progress is lacking.
The best way to measure how efficient your efforts are in implementing value stream management is by using VS metrics. Having end-to-end visibility of your value streams is a great benefit of this model, and you can do that using tools – VSMPs and specific metrics that can help your efforts.
DevOps metrics are important for measuring the throughput and stability of value streams, showcasing their evolution and overall health. Since DORA metrics are closely linked to VSM, monitoring them has become a go-to practice for value stream managers that want to identify inefficiency, waste, and bottlenecks and use the data to streamline and enhance operations. By monitoring the DORA metrics over time and perfecting them, you get better efficiency of the value stream. Here are the four DORA metrics that help you track DevOps practices:
Waydev enables you to track your organization’s value streams by using our all-in-one DORA metrics dashboard. The four metrics help you track DevOps teams’ performance by pulling automated data into the VSMP and comparing them over time to assess progress.
Flow metrics are used to accurately measure an organization’s capacity to deliver critical business capabilities to focus on the delivery flow, assessing its speed. These metrics will help value stream managers to understand, measure, and optimize the flow of work through the value streams.
Implementing value stream management in software development enables organizations to break down silos, enhance collaboration across teams, optimize DevOps practices, and improve workflows. In order to get started with VSM, CIOs need to identify the desired outcomes, OKRs, and KPIs and identify the best ways to assess their completion and general progress.
Waydev can help tech leaders implement the value stream management model and encourage a culture of continuous improvement by providing the necessary metrics and automated data collection. Our solution enables you to automatically evaluate and monitor DORA metrics and access a series of reports, from templates to customized versions.
Contact us today to understand how we can help you implement value stream management solutions.