Delivery Services | Article

It’s not the Software developers who are slowing down delivery

Grant Wood
on November 29, 2023
How to get software delivery done faster

The first thing in getting software delivery done faster is to ask if the software developers are actually causing the biggest slowdown in software delivery.

When coming into an organisation to help them solve this problem, the first thing we do is actually map out how much time it takes to do the various stages of getting the work ready for the software developers to actually do the development.  Then we map out the testing and deployment pipelines and then deployment to production.


Value stream mapping

This process is called Value Stream Mapping where you work out how much time we’re spending on each of those stages. We’ve worked with a number of organisations this year where we’ve been asked to improve the speed of software development, but what we’ve actually found is that it’s all the things around software development that are slow. 

Where we’re seeing slowdown have been around getting requirements to the developers, getting the designs done, and then also testing. The opportunity here is around getting faster feedback to the developers around the results of the tests. We also ask if there’s an option to  automate the testing so it can be incorporated into the pipeline. All of these things speed up the work for developers.

Top five tips for speeding up developers

#1 – Implement and embed a mature agile process to make sure all your work is visible. It’s critical that everyone can see what’s coming up and how that work flows through the system and using Scrum or Kanban is a great way to achieve this.


#2 – Implement DevOps and that means bringing developers and operations closer together so that you can speed up the time it takes from finishing development through to getting the work in production. Automate everything in DevOps. That’s the real key to speeding up that process. Have a go at automating the testing, the deployment and make sure you’re invested in the right automated tools. It’s worth it to speed up that process.


#3 – Have a look at Lean and Lean software development. Identify the seven wastes of Lean software and remove those wastes.


#4 – Utilise in design thinking. Make sure we’re working on developing the right thing. The ultimate goal is to work on delivering the highest value from the customer’s point of view first.


#5 – And last but not least, invest and support your high-performing cross-functional team/s to deliver the work. Make sure your team is a ‘two pizza size team’ with all the skills within the team that it needs to deliver work to the customer and maintain that work as well.



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