Continuous Automation: Measuring Digital Transformation

The IT industry has spoken: digital transformation is here. Having a digital transformation strategy is the difference between disrupting or being disrupted. But transformation is hard and it doesn’t happen overnight. Without clear goals, it’s difficult to know if you’re making progress when you spend your days in the tactical trenches. The problem is most organizations don’t know which indicators to track. Set clear metrics based on proven industry data to ensure you’re actually moving the needle forward.

Continuous Improvement

Traditional approaches to business no longer work as they don’t meet the expectations of the market and are ripe for disruption by more nimble competitors. Leaders in digital transformation are accepting that digital (or the ‘app’) is the new customer interface and are focused on delivering experiences to that interface. Which means more apps, doing more things, faster. Companies that embrace these shifts outperform their peers in terms of revenue growth, operating profit growth, shareholder return growth, and a host of other measures. But in order to get there, the pursuit of outperformance in digital transformation for a business means following a philosophy of Kaizen, or continuous improvement.

Cross-Functional Teams

An example of the changing role of IT organizations

Digital transformation is here. In previous posts, we’ve touched on how ALDO (Agile, Lean, DevOps) principles help realign teams to fix organizational tension. Many organizations are in some phase of a transformation initiative. The Chef Survey 2017 results illustrate the changing role of IT organizations. But how does an enterprise manage to successfully navigate their way through an initiative with such large ambitious goals?

Setting the right metrics

Effective leadership at scale means setting proper context and giving your teams the knowledge they need to make decisions and act autonomously. Disruptive leaders win by distributing expertise that enables teams to make decisions with a high degree of both decision quality and decision velocity. The hard part is distilling large complex initiatives into small, easy to convey, and easy to understand guidelines to follow.

Quantifying Outcomes with key metrics

In our short-form interactive webinar series, “Quantifying DevOps Outcomes”, we explored methodologies for distributing expertise by orienting around measurable outcomes that encourage behaviors that eventually change organizational culture. The metrics to substantiate the delivery of those outcomes are gleaned from industry measures like the State of DevOps report.

Applying that to the Continuous Enterprise

Ultimately, continuous automation, and the ALDO processes to support improved software delivery should be measurable. Those who lead digital transformation successfully have pioneered significant technical and cultural shifts that let them deploy applications quickly, efficiently, and with minimum risk. Quantifying outcomes of transformation as improvements in Speed, Efficiency and Risk management provide a practical set of measurable guidelines to use in determining whether a proposed project, strategy, or implementation details serves to move your organization toward success. Process changes can be objectively assessed to determine their impact as part of your continuous improvement approach.

For an in-depth look at how these metrics drive transformation initiatives that help your company outperform, check out the four part webinar series on Digital Transformation and the competitive edge: (Part 1) (2) (3) (4).  For a closer look at how measurable outcomes play a critical role your overall strategy, download our white paper: Continuous Automation for the Continuous Enterprise.

Author George Miranda

George is a Product Marketing Director at Chef. He worked in webops for over 15 years at a variety of small dotcoms and large enterprises before delving into DevOps and Infrastructure as Code. He enjoys being a technical advocate and discussing effective solutions. He's an automation junkie that lives to help others solve problems and would love to help you solve yours. He lives in the Pacific Northwest and is a sucker for artisanal whiskey.