​​Lean Systems to Achieve Enterprise Solution Delivery

Lean Systems to Achieve Enterprise Solution Delivery

Lean systems are a key to achieving enterprise solution delivery. As a software development method, lean systems thinking has its roots in the Toyota Production System. The term “lean” was first coined in the 1990s by John Krafcik, who used it to describe the Toyota Production System.
 
In recent years, lean systems have been adopted by a number of companies outside the automotive industry, including manufacturers of medical devices, consumer electronics, and software. In each case, these companies have adapted lean systems thinking to their own specific needs and contexts.
 
The basic premise of lean systems is to eliminate waste in all forms in order to achieve higher levels of quality, productivity, and customer satisfaction. In the software development context, lean systems thinking can be applied to the entire software development lifecycle, from idea generation and requirements gathering through design, development, testing, deployment, and maintenance. In this article, we will explore how lean systems thinking can be applied to each phase of the software development lifecycle.
 
Idea Generation and Requirements Gathering
 
The first step in applying lean systems thinking to software development is to focus on generating ideas and gathering requirements in a way that eliminates waste. One common source of waste in this phase is the tendency to generate too many ideas, most of which are never used.
 
One way to eliminate this waste is to use a technique called “idea mapping.” Idea mapping is a visual way of representing ideas and requirements. It involves creating a map of all the ideas that have been generated, and then grouping them into related categories. This allows stakeholders to quickly see which ideas are related, and which ones are not.
 
Another way to eliminate waste in this phase is to use a technique called “value stream mapping.” Value stream mapping is a way of visualizing the steps that are needed to take a product or service from concept to delivery. It helps to identify which steps add value and which steps do not.
 
Once the ideas have been mapped and the value stream has been identified, the next step is to prioritize the ideas and requirements. This can be done using a technique called “kanban.” Kanban is a Japanese word that means “signboard” or “billboard.” In the context of software development, it refers to a system in which work is divided into small pieces and then assigned to specific individuals.
 
The kanban system is designed to eliminate waste by ensuring that work is only started on items that are ready to be worked on. This prevents the waste that can occur when work is started on an item that is not ready, and then has to be put aside until it is ready.
 
Design
 
Once the ideas and requirements have been gathered and prioritized, the next step is to design the solution. In the context of software development, design refers to the process of creating a blueprint for the software that will be developed.
 
The goal of design is to create a solution that meets the needs of the customer while also eliminating waste. One way to eliminate waste in the design phase is to use a technique called “agile modeling.” Agile modeling is a way of designing software that is focused on delivering value to the customer as quickly as possible.
 
It involves breaking the design process into small steps, and then delivering the software in increments. This allows stakeholders to provide feedback on the software after each increment, and then the design can be adjusted based on that feedback.
 
Another way to eliminate waste in the design phase is to use a technique called “continuous integration.” Continuous integration is a way of automatically integrating new code into the software that has already been developed. This allows developers to quickly find and fix errors, and it also prevents the waste that can occur when new code breaks existing code.
 
Testing
 
Once the software has been designed, the next step is to test it to ensure that it meets the needs of the customer. Testing is a critical part of software development, and it should not be skipped or shortcuts should not be taken.
 
One way to eliminate waste in the testing phase is to use a technique called “continuous testing.” Continuous testing is a way of automatically running tests on the software as it is being developed. This allows errors to be found and fixed quickly, and it also prevents the waste that can occur when new code breaks existing code.
 
Another way to eliminate waste in the testing phase is to use a technique called “test-driven development.” Test-driven development is a way of developing software in which the tests are written before the code. This allows developers to focus on writing code that meets the needs of the tests, and it also prevents the waste that can occur when code is written that does not meet the needs of the tests.
 
Deployment
 
Once the software has been designed and tested, the next step is to deploy it. Deployment is the process of making the software available to the customer.
 
One way to eliminate waste in the deployment phase is to use a technique called “continuous delivery.” Continuous delivery is a way of automatically deploying new code to the customer as it is being developed. This allows the customer to receive new features and fixes quickly, and it also prevents the waste that can occur when code is not deployed in a timely manner.
 
Another way to eliminate waste in the deployment phase is to use a technique called “zero downtime deployment.” Zero downtime deployment is a way of deploying new code without taking the software offline. This allows the customer to continue using the software while new code is being deployed, and it also prevents the waste that can occur when the software is taken offline for deployment.
 
Maintenance
 
Once the software has been deployed, the next step is to maintain it. Maintenance is the process of making sure that the software is up-to-date and running smoothly.
 
One way to eliminate waste in the maintenance phase is to use a technique called “continuous monitoring.” Continuous monitoring is a way of automatically checking the software for errors and then fixing them quickly. This allows the customer to always have the latest version of the software, and it also prevents the waste that can occur when errors are not found and fixed in a timely manner.
 
Another way to eliminate waste in the maintenance phase is to use a technique called “self-healing.” Self-healing is a way of automatically fixing errors that are found in the software. This allows the customer to always have the latest version of the software, and it also prevents the waste that can occur when errors are not found and fixed in a timely manner.
 
Case Study: Amazon
 
Amazon is a company that has used continuous delivery to great effect. Amazon has a strict policy of only deploying code that has been thoroughly tested. This policy allows Amazon to deploy new features and fixes quickly, and it also prevents the waste that can occur when code is not deployed in a timely manner.
 
In addition, Amazon has a policy of never taking the software offline for deployment. This policy allows Amazon to continue selling products and services while new code is being deployed, and it also prevents the waste that can occur when the software is taken offline for deployment.
 
As a result of these policies, Amazon has been able to achieve a high level of customer satisfaction. In fact, Amazon has consistently ranked as the most customer-centric company in the world.
 
Conclusion
 
Enterprise solution delivery is a complex process that involves many different steps. Each step in the process has the potential to create waste. However, a lean systems approach can help to eliminate waste and improve the efficiency of the process. At Agileseventeen, we provide expert coaching and consulting services to help our clients implement lean systems for enterprise solution delivery. Get in touch with us today at talkagile@agileseventeen.com to  learn more about how we can help you.
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