Innovate Products Faster: Graphical Tools for Accelerating Product Development

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However, this effort, which involves all of IT, really took off three to four years ago when we decided to take a new approach. Instead of different IT groups working on individual projects in pockets here and there, we took a step back to evaluate the challenges Intel was facing and how IT could make a difference.

We met with various product teams to discuss their biggest issues and then brainstormed with them about what IT might be able to do. The figure below shows the three main phases: pre-silicon, manufacturing, and post-silicon. The basic process works like this: the design engineers come up with an idea and vet it through pre-silicon prototype development, emulation, and simulation. Eventually, the new product a wafer is manufactured, followed by post-silicon validation.

Faster Product Design through IT Innovation - IT Peer Network

If defects in the design are found during this phase, the cycle starts over with more testing, manufacturing, validation, and so on. What we have done at Intel can serve as a model for other IT departments across a wide variety of industries to boost business velocity and product quality.

Therefore, if we can reduce the number of steps, we can significantly speed TTM. In we made significant progress toward that goal, and will see further improvements. In one of our key efforts, we created a virtual infrastructure to support software design, allowing software and hardware design to move in parallel. Foreshadowing the future of information technology, IT is ascending from back-office function to strategic enabler. Driving its rise, customers expect traditionally non-tech companies - such as personal banking - to provide rich digital services seamlessly across devices.

Enabling its rise in response, IT teams are rapidly adopting new processes to help their companies deliver an expanding array of digital products.

Products for Digital Innovation

In this article we explore recent trends of IT development as a critical component of enterprise strategy. We explore how leading technology companies shape customer expectations and product development best practice, and the resulting impact on - and reactions by - traditionally non-tech companies. We conclude with a case study that illustrates how evolving IT strategies now incorporate on-demand teams to accelerate critical projects. Business function best-practices evolve.

Enterprise Resource Planning systems have helped companies manage disparate data for decades. Within IT, product development and project management approaches have also evolved in response to changing customer requirements and new enabling technologies. Historically, enterprise IT teams were organizationally distinct and they built products according to rigid plans.

Infrastructure hardware and applications software were separate, and within each category, technologists specialized on discrete tasks, such as software engineering or network administration. This approach was called the waterfall method. For both infrastructure and IT, waterfall development scripted highly specialized steps and roles, all designed to exquisitely predict every element of a single, complex product.

A hallmark of 20th century manufacturing, this sequential development approach borrowed from meticulous planning used to build products such as space shuttles and the Hoover Dam. For projects with clearly defined scope and requirements, built with well-understood technology, the waterfall approach is suitable. However, even with these variables defined, intensive planning lead to longer development times.

Further, even with the best initial plans, the changing needs of technology users - both within and outside the company - contrasted sharply against the fixed variables of damming a river. Fluid demands called for flexible production. What is now known as Agile development was born, or at least canonized, during a ski trip meeting of several leading software developers during the early s.

They aimed to develop methods to quickly build working software and deliver it to end users. In contrast to the waterfall approach, which resolutely marched towards a highly-defined product, the agile method continuously built, tested and refined product in response to end user feedback. For startups and tech companies, adopting agile as the prevailing development method was easy. No legacy systems or specialized roles stood in their way. However, for companies with legacy infrastructure such as on-site servers and highly regimented IT organizations, pairing fast-moving agile with comparatively glacial infrastructure workflows proved daunting.

Leading consulting firms proposed two-speed IT, whereby infrastructure and application teams remained largely separate but were encouraged to work together. Despite its period of prominence, two-speed IT was ultimately considered limited , and soon surpassed by holistic practices that integrated infrastructure and applications. As covered in depth in our previous article, DevOps describes an integrative approach to software development and systems administration. Expanding the Agile lens, it encompasses software development Dev and operations Ops , and describes a type of engineer, culture and practice that collectively enable a company to deliver new and improved technology products at high velocity.

Perhaps its most critical distinction versus Agile, DevOps focuses not only on the rapid development of functional software, but also on its continuous delivery to customers. The later objective requires a holistic view of both upstream software development activities and downstream infrastructure management. It also incorporates a variety of off-the-shelf cloud services, such as Git for code repository, and Microsoft Azure, AWS and Google Cloud for rapid deployment of cloud-based applications. Marshalling these cloud resources, DevOps teams gain control over critical infrastructure-as-code components and self-service capability no waiting for IT operations to provision infrastructure.

As a result, DevOps teams can more quickly develop, deploy and modify new applications, reducing the time to solving pressing customer needs. Until recently, digital products loomed on the horizon for many large, traditional companies.

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These innovations instead occupied the domain of digital natives and weaker incumbents, fearing disintermediation by innovative startups. Leading technology companies across multiple verticals are redefining customer expectations. Consequently, nearly all companies stand amidst rapidly shifting terrain, which forces products, and sometimes entire business models, into the digital arena. Given this ubiquitous change, digital transformation strategy, and the ability to execute it, are no longer optional.

To do so, he established Greenfield Labs, a human-centered lab based in Palo Alto. To execute its new purpose, Ford will continue to build smarter vehicles. The role of Greenfield Labs as it establishes new locations in strategic geographies will be to partner with businesses and cities to bring customer needs to the forefront of the design of its products and services.

Ideally, the innovation leaders and the parent organization work together to identify and solve high-priority problems through beacon projects. If they work, they can be game-changers. After six months of research, design, and testing in a wide array of areas including brand, architectural design, curriculum design, business economics, teacher requirements, and school uniforms, Intercorp launched Innova Schools.

What began as an initial prototype has now grown to 54 schools in Peru and one in Mexico. Innova is profitable and has graduated countless students who lacked an affordable schooling option. Innova is now planning to expand globally to bring affordable education to the world.

These observations revealed that customers would often have to wait in three different lines to request, pay, and pick up their items. The project illustrated the importance not only of improving the customer experience, but of redesigning the employee experience so they were empowered to deliver a more personalized customer experience. Their NPS score showed customer loyalty skyrocketing, from 53 to Those outcomes have translated across other businesses. Its mandate: To transform Intercorp. Established in , the lab started small with a ragtag team of design mercenaries and a new Chief Innovation Officer, Hernan Carranza.

One of the first projects sponsored by the lab set out to define the needs of Peruvian families. These family archetypes created a common ground from which all 35 different companies from Intercorp could build, with the lab as the center of gravity uniting future businesses. And while many of the 35 companies are now capable of running their own beacon projects, La Victoria Lab continues to sponsor cross-business initiatives, such as digital transformation.

The lab will also continue to define new mindsets and capabilities to attract, retain and develop best-in-class talent for all of its future businesses. Just as an ant colony needs both explorer and worker ants to survive and thrive; a lab needs and a mix of strategists, designers, and makers. Finding people who balance breadth of interests and capabilities with depth of expertise enables the lab to quickly pivot in both project and purpose if needed.

Those workers are often called T-shaped, because they can go both wide across subject areas and deep on craft. Mindset : Hire those who are curious, empathetic, optimistic, open to experimentation, collaborative, and comfortable with ambiguity. The no asshole rule is also critical to building collaborative teams. Method : Mastery of design thinking methods, including user observation and interviewing, synthesis, brainstorming, prototyping, and storytelling to name a few are a must.

These are core capabilities to building to learn, not necessarily scaling to implement.

Aerospace & Defense

Culture is probably the biggest differentiator between the lab and the parent organization. Labs must produce radically new ideas, and a creative culture that can produce such ideas looks very different from a culture built to optimize. Location: Labs thrive when they are physically far enough from the parent organization to explore a new idea without too much scrutiny, but close enough to test and co-create with the teams deeply embedded in execution.

And importantly, they work best in locations with a diverse range of creative talent. Follow the designers.