17/05/2021 | Written by: João Ferreira
Categorized: Automation | Data & AI
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“How often do you have the chance to get a dry-run of a project before you move into a full implementation? How often can you show your internal stakeholders the success factors met before you get budget approval to implement the project? “
We are the IBM Benelux MVP Squad Team; and I am João Ferreira, MVP squad leader in Benelux. My blog is about how our team can help you launch your project successfully.
Our mission is to work closely with you for a limited but highly effective time to identify, define and implement a production quality use case. We cover a large array of technologies, including data, automation, integration, AIOPs, and cloud management. We also provide the best industry experts to deliver a concise project using agile methodology, all of this at no cost. Tell us more about your idea; that is usually the starting point, and how you want to solve a specific business or technical challenge. If you don’t know how and where to start, don’t worry; we can handle it; we have done it before.
Before we go any further, you may wonder how you can benefit by starting an MVP initiative and why you should start to think about it right away?
Starting a new project can be time and resource-intensive, usually two things you don’t have in stock in your organization. Investing upfront into an idea without knowing the result is risky, and we all know the risk is what takes you back from even deciding to do it. When you start an MVP initiative with IBM, you eliminate the risk as you don’t need to commit upfront to invest in the technology before knowing the initiative’s outcomes from a business and technical perspective.
But what is exactly an MVP?
MVP stands for “Minimal Viable Product”, unlike some other terms, this one seems straightforward enough and easy to understand.
This concept is used in many industries; thus, the term “PRODUCT” is generic enough to include a material item or a software solution. For example, you could imagine that concept in the automotive industry with a prototype or concept car.
The final product would feature the minimum components to be able to call it a car. It would have four wheels, a steering wheel, a small engine, one seat, a windshield, and a body. If the design is a primary concern, it would also feature the first lines of the to-be look. Although this product would not have all the comfort yet, the capacity to transport more people, the power to drive at high speeds, it is already operational and could be used in certain conditions.
In the IT industry, the product is a software solution featuring the minimal software components to run it in a production system with limited constraints. These can be related to the number of transactions, users, integration to other systems, or limited user interface capabilities.The resulting minimal product, including all its features, called the MVP SCOPE, is defined before implementation, with a business framing or scope definition workshop.
For an optimal definition, it’s key to gather the right stakeholders around the table or virtual session as we do it nowadays. Technical requirements should not be the sole subject of these discussions. Instead, business criteria and success factors are critical to ensure the solution adoption by end-users.
The scope is influenced by the time allocated to create the product. Therefore, a time-boxed approach is necessary to ensure the product stays minimal; the tendency to extend the product with more features is a natural stakeholder behavior. Thus, limiting the time results in scope limitation.
The success factors are defined, the scope and timing agreed by all stakeholders, there are still three elements left to identify: the project plan, resources, and start time.And this is where the SQUAD enters into play; my role is to find the best resources within IBM and build the most fitted team, to create the product within the allocated time frame.
Build your MVP and deliver it into production
We are the IBM Benelux MVP Squad Team; how can we help you?
We made it easy for you; our rules of engagement are straightforward. In general, there are two trigger scenarios to engage our team:
- You have a well-defined use case; you may even know what IBM software technology is the best fit for your solution.
- You don’t have a clear idea yet, either on the use case itself or on the IBM software technology you may apply to get to your final solution.
In both cases, we are an excellent fit for your research. If your use case is mature, we will move faster to an MVP scope definition and a quick start of an MVP project. When your use case is less mature, we help you identify the stakeholders, technical and business success factors to then move to the MVP project definition.
We like to time-box our MVP proposal to a maximum of four weeks; of course, we know every project is different. We have some flexibility, but defining a short time frame allows everyone to deliver the best result in a fast and effective way. Each MVP we deliver is an investment from IBM to you; in return, we ask for your engagement, as your engagement is necessary for the project’s qualification and success and should not be undermined.
In the next blog, we will present the most popular and typical use cases we see across the board, where we have gained experience and leverage people and assets.
What are you waiting for?
Get in touch now, and let’s discuss your idea. Then, together we can make it happen, faster than you were imagining.
Book a meeting here >