Automating Product Tools

Product Tools and Automation

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Product Tools and Automation

This post discusses the sixth and final key finding gathered from the analysis of the latest Global Study of Product Team Performance.

#6 Key Performance Indicator

Product Teams that Believe Their Effectiveness Would Be Improved by the Use of Product Tools and Automation Are Likely to Be High Performance Teams in Companies that Achieve Their Financial Goals and Objectives.

Just over 50% of our survey respondents are members of technology development teams. For this reason, this finding is particularly meaningful to technology development organizations.

Desire to Improve Tools and Increase Automation

The sixth indicator of high performance is essentially possessing the desire for improved tools and increased automation. Organizations that have implemented effective team processes often seek out ways to further improve efficiency.

This indicator points to the rapid uptake of DevOps and the Extreme Programming (XP) practices that underpin it.

This particularly points to:

  • Test automation of every kind starting from the practice of test driven development
  • Refactoring (and tools that automate refactoring)
    • Continuous integration, continuous delivery, and continuous deployment (and
    the automated build tools and application release tools that support these
    practices)

 

The up swell of enthusiasm for test-and-build automation has driven strong tool development and rapid tool advancement. This includes having check-ins kick off build scripts that not only compile binaries, but also generate documentation, tests, and statistics. They also kick off test automation, plus generate and deploy distribution media, website pages, and program logic to servers.

In addition, on the operations side, tooling like continuous configuration automation enables automated rollout of both physical and virtual infrastructure. The result is that teams with effective team processes find themselves continuously looking with longing for the latest – and the latest is rapidly evolving.

Next Post: Wrapping It All Up

For several weeks now we have delved into the responses and analysis of the latest Global Study of Product Team Performance. Next week, we reach the conclusion when I will share a few final thoughts on this interesting survey and its outcomes.

Recap of the Six Key Performance Indicators:

  1. High performing teams have a clear definition of “done”.
  2. Respondents unable to associate a product development methodology with product profitability are unlikely to be on a high performing team.
  3. Respondents who believe using Agile/Scrum leads to high product profitability tend to be in organizations that meet or exceed their financial goals.
  4. Teams that consider development cost as a criterion for requirements prioritization are more likely to under-perform (i.e., negatively correlated).
  5. There is a strong correlation between an effectively prioritized backlog and high product team performance
  6. Product teams that believe their effectiveness would be improved by the use of product tools and automation are likely to be high performance teams in companies that achieve their financial goals and objectives.

 

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