Friday, February 10, 2006

Why should you use xProcess with your development teams?

Occasionally I get asked questions that force me to re-consider my elevator-pitch for xProcess. So somebody just asked me why he should use xProcess with his development teams. Here's my reply:

"xProcess merges a continual process improvement capability (dynamic process management) with fully connected project collaboration and management (dynamic project execution).

"If you capture your processes in xProcess it means that the patterns of tasks, deliverables, quality criteria and workflows in the process can be realized by project managers and participants as actual elements in running projects. (Since all data in xProcess is fully versioned you also have a full audit trail of who changed what, when and even in some cases why.) This means it is much easier for people to be compliant with your corporate processes than not to be! Given the investment you are making in process improvement this is great news. However xProcess is not a straight-jacket. If project managers choose non-standard ways to do things they probably have good reasons (especially as it’s easier for them to be compliant than not!). Such non-standard approaches are captured and visible within xProcess so that different approaches can be analyzed and compared. If they are successful it is easy in xProcess to take these new patterns of working (and new templates for deliverables, and new quality criteria, etc.) and make them part of a new or extended process.

"Why do it? Because having the best possible process gives you the highest competitive advantage. Having no standard process is wasteful, confusing and lacking in control. Having the wrong standard process – even constraining teams to quite a good process – is costly in resources, quality and morale. xProcess delivers flexible processes to running projects in a way that they can easily follow them and modify them (in a fully auditable way) as they need to. It leverages the process knowledge in your teams as well as providing them with the best possible support from process experts. It’s the best way to start the optimization of processes that will make your teams more effective than the opposition."

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