Conclusion and Next Steps
This document began with an arguably bold mission statement: to describe a Digital Operating Model capable of holistically managing the value and risk of every Digital Product in a business at all times. While the industry momentum behind Digital Products provided an opportunity to prioritize value management, the biggest hurdle in the path of this goal has been how a digital business can become product-centric end-to-end and permanently break out of silo-oriented organizations, operations, and cultures. Once a product-centric core has been established, the traditional elements of an Operating Model (organizational models, funding models, etc.) required solutions that could support de-centralized accountability and greater levels of authority and autonomy necessary to achieve agility and value management at scale. Common functions must be evolved to enable product-centricity, while entirely new functions are needed to support the now truly digital business. A vision and plan for the future Digital Operating Model is only the first step, however.
The solutions prescribed by this document were described only at a high level. Many solution topics, such as helix organizations, could easily warrant a dedicated guidance publication providing best practices for adoption. Also note that there may be alternative solutions to those recommended by this document that over time prove to be the better solution overall or for specific organizations.
Integration represents another key consideration for enterprise planners. This includes integration with new and emerging delivery methodologies, as well as with existing functions, roles, processes, and tools the previous sections could only touch on briefly.
Finally, perhaps the most critical next step is consideration for the transformation itself. The Digital Product-Centric Reference Operating Model represents a fundamentally new way of operating. While it builds upon Agile concepts and principles familiar to segments of most technology organizations, the overall model for operating represents significant change for many technology teams. That level of change can introduce cultural risk into an already complex transformation program. All of these risks can be minimized, however, with a robust change leadership plan. The most successful change leadership plans and large-scale transformations begin with a clear and appropriately detailed vision and value proposition. To that end, it is the hope of this document’s authors that it proves over time to be a foundational asset in the journey of every business to successfully operating a truly digital business.