It’s no secret that speeding and optimizing digital transformation is now key to the success of pretty much every organization. The ability to harness digital technologies is what will propel the attainment of core business objectives. For example, a Deloitte study found digital technologies help accelerate the attainment of key strategic goals by 22%.
In the pursuit of digital transformation initiatives, value stream management (VSM) has emerged as an essential strategy. While VSM has been around for decades, its uses, urgency, and underlying technologies are what’s bringing this approach to the forefront for many executives.
In essence, VSM refers to the techniques used to optimize the realization of value from an organization’s products or services. As business leaders pursue their VSM initiatives in today’s digital world, many are finding that digital product management (DPM) is a key accelerator and facilitator. In the following sections we provide a high-level introduction to DPM and outline its key advantages.
An Introduction to Digital Product Management (DPM)
Today, DPM represents a core building block of a digitally optimized business. DPM is a strategic approach to ensuring technology investments yield maximum returns. Through DPM, teams apply a set of practices that help optimize the evolving management of technology.
DPM necessitates a reorientation from a project management focus to one centered on product management. While the two phrases sound similar, this represents a significant shift that has profound tactical, strategic, and cultural implications.
When teams are funding one-off projects, they have to work through extensive processes associated with project definition, justification, funding, and so on—and, once one project is complete, the process has to start again from the beginning for the next project.
By contrast, when teams take a product-focused approach, they start building funding around strategic products. Products are sustained, strategically aligned around customer value, and are supported by dedicated teams. These teams are focused on defining value and tracking the delivery of value over time. Through DPM, product managers can effectively communicate features delivered and their impact and provide a roadmap of plans and timelines.
DPM Advantages: Facilitating Value Stream Management
DPM enables organizations to enhance their operational and delivery value streams. By basing VSM initiatives on a solid DPM foundation, teams can realize a number of advantages:
- Enhance alignment. Through optimized DPM, teams can connect work to outcomes that are defined as part of the overarching business strategy. This creates synergies and alignment across teams, enabling a better focus on key outcomes.
- Strengthen accountability. Product funders need to understand how money is being used and whether expected outcomes are being achieved. DPM equips teams with enhanced visibility, so they can more effectively assess whether investments are providing the desired outcomes.
- Increase agility. DPM enables changes to be made midstream. Working from roadmaps, teams can better understand the impact of changes, intelligently assess tradeoffs, and iterate more quickly and intelligently.
- Improve outcomes and ROI. By using DPM to fuel VSM initiatives, teams can optimize investments so they deliver maximum value. Plus, they can more effectively demonstrate the ROI of the investments that have been made.
As organizations pursue VSM to achieve their digital transformation objectives, DPM represents an invaluable enabler. Through DPM, teams can more effectively ensure their digital products and services deliver the biggest ROI and the most customer value. To learn more about how DPM leads to VSM success, please visit VSM On Demand.
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 Source: Deloitte, “Uncovering the connection between digital maturity and financial performance,” May 26, 2020, Gurumurthy, R., Schatsky, D., and Camhi, J.