Several changes have emerged over the past ten years: new technologies have significantly progressed. Multinational companies face new competitors, smaller, business agile, leveraging innovative mindset, increasing need for shorter time-to-market and new ways of working. Consumers and markets expect rapid services and continuous innovation.
In this context, going fast is vital: it is not the strongest companies which succeed but the ones which adapt to change faster.
Digital technology offers multinational companies new opportunities: the possibility to deliver business value, launch new services and test innovative concepts in a short time-to-market. We have learnt that time-to-market is paramount when a multinational company wants its digital transformation strategy to achieve business success.
How to enable, thanks to technology, a short time-to-market to reach business success?
As we have pointed it out, multinational companies face an increasingly competitive environment. To deal with it, they need to deploy new initiatives in a fast time-to-market, avoiding the “tunnel” effect and being able to adapt very fast. However, they need a new way of working and appropriate capabilities.
To acquire these capabilities and hit the market faster, evolving in a dynamic scope is needed. What does it mean?
- An organization with a dedicated team
- A governance with IT & business partnership and business decision-making involvement
- Digital technology, DevOps methods and infrastructures to manage changes and be able to adapt on the fly
- A new way of working including markets feedbacks and change management
A dynamic scope to enable a short time-to-market appears as a key success factor. What are the associated benefits?
2. Why enabling a short time-to-market is a necessity for any multinational company?
Companies pursue time-to-market improvement for different reasons:
- Adapt the company’s operations and culture to the new rules imposed by the digital revolution
- Go fast while remaining structured and scalable
- Moving from POC (proof of concept) to generalized business success (from « garage » to industrialized and profitable project)
Getting products and services to market in a short time-to-market offers huge outcomes to multinational companies:
- Scalable business success & increased business impact in markets
- Adaptations to consumer needs
- High adoption & mindset change
- Increase sales
- Set apart from its competitiors & remain a leadership position
- Provide market flexibility & continuously improve innovation process
Enabling a fast time-to-market is vital to beat the competition and achieve business success. How to do so?
- How to animate a business initiative to avoid the stalling effect and reach business success?6 March 2019
- How to deploy business initiatives at scale in a short time-to-market to achieve its business objectives?4 March 2019
- How to enable a short time-to-market to be successful?1 March 2019
- How to deploy a new business model in a short time-to-market to reach success?22 February 2019
- How to monitor brand positioning and product performance online to reach business success?20 February 2019
3. How to enable a short time-to-market?
Through our own experience, there are three conditions to fast time-to-market: commitment, commitment, commitment! What makes a fast, qualitative delivery of business value a reality beyond expectations is simple in words. But far more complicated in acts. To reach ambitious time-to-market, commitment is required at every stage of a business initiative rocket.
What do we mean by commitment?
At sponsor level
Commitment to the iterative approach is of paramount importance, acknowledging its advantages and concessions. Because if you intend to move fast, do not expect to do it with a millstone around the neck. That won’t happen, ever. It does not mean everything has to be wild and out of control. On the contrary, a fast time-to-market approach requires even more discipline and rigour.
Sacrifice lies in what you cannot expect: the delivery of an immutable, contractual scope engagement. Make this outdated, non-negotiable point a tight bit looser, and you can expect in return that things go fast and create business value. Of course, this is far easier with a partner you trust, both from the quality and commitment points of view. Because you contractualize an attitude and means that come with it, not a pre-defined result. You bet people engaged in such innovative, fast time-to-market approach to business value delivery will be hugely rewarding to you. And you would be amazed how it often turns to be true.
At Core Team level
Commitment from Core Team leaders to the fast-paced delivery is no less important and relies on being able to take quick decisions and maintain a (measured) risk-taker attitude.
Nothing is more threatening to time-to-market than decisions impossible to obtain. That inability to decide is a true killer of fast Business Value delivery. So, commitment expected from Core Team in a Business Initiative is simple but crucial:
- Be knowledgeable about business value currently created
- Be accountable for the decisions (features, scope…), and be courageous about it
- Be quick and available whenever a decision has to be taken
That kind of Core Team, you do not meet them everyday. But they exist and they are a delight to work with. And we know for sure they are regularly rewarded with great Business Value and time-to-market. Courage and commitment have to have their bright sides!
With/From Partners who deliver
Now for the heart of delivery, commitment must be absolute to quality and respect of engagement. Engagement of delivering business value, of being agile whenever it is possible, of being fully dedicated to the time-to-market goal every Initiative member is aiming at.
The delivery partners able to manage that kind of commitment do not grow on trees. They are a particular breed of business initiative partners, often digital-born, with specific approach to fast delivery:
- Smart Team: small, dedicated team of highly-skilled people (commando), organized on a flat hierarchy
- Iterative methods: ability to manage business value creation with quick, ready for use iterations, following a continuous improvement of the Initiative
- DevOps methods and infrastructures: ability to manage PROD deliveries, worldwide, very quickly and efficiently
- Rollout methods: ability to make the initiative available to business users at a quick pace, including complex deployments with change management
Find that kind of Partners and commitment from Sponsor and Core Team will flow naturally.
Sharing the rules of the game
This commitment at every level has to be explained and shared, clearly exposed from the very genesis of the initiative. We are talking about a bold move here, something unusual and ambitious, with all the potential for huge success and relative or total failure. That is why the rules of the game must be clear to everybody from the beginning. Share success, share failure, and always learn from it together.
When a company decides to be bold, it cannot expect to win everytime. But it can surely expect to win big when an ambitious business initiative hits the bull’s eye in a record time-to-market.
To sum up, enabling a short time-to-market is vital for any multinational company wishing to reach business success.
To do so, a strong commitment at every level, a new way of working and a focus on business success are key factors:
- Phase 1: achieve a first business success in a short time-to-market by implementing a new way of working
- Phase 2: extend success with KPIs to measure success (business and execution)
- Phase 3: generalize success across the whole company thanks to a digital repository