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From Startup to Scalable OrganizationWhen we started out ten years ago, we had a simple product, no realcompetitors and product installation was so easy that project managementfor customer rollouts didn‟t seem very useful to us. Over time, as theflexibility of our products increased, we added a professional servicescapability to our company that was, in its earliest stages, somewhathaphazard and delivered inconsistent results to our customers. This led tocustomer satisfaction issues that were a real impediment to our success asan organization. Since delivering demonstrable customer value is the onlymoral way to achieve business success in our industry, we knew we had tofix this problem quickly.Once we inculcated some repeatable processes based on projectmanagement disciplines into our delivery, we were able to go so far as toproductize our initial customer rollout service. This has been so successfulthat we‟ve been able to strategically virtualize that service in certaininstances. For example, we use a vendor to assist with every rollout thatincludes integration with QuickBooks. This is surgically precise outsourcing ofa very specific portion of a certain kind of rollout of our product that iscommon for a subset of our smaller customers – firms that sell services toother businesses. Our integrated Journyx/QuickBooks rollouts moved from adismal 50% satisfaction rate to an excellent 100% once we got that processwell-defined and adhered to. We couldn‟t have done this without outsourcingit because retaining a QuickBooks black belt in-house would have been tooexpensive; nor could we have succeeded in this without a very well-definedproject management process that is both flexible enough to work for allcustomers in this category and strict enough to ensure success.This success has pushed and encouraged us to put tightly-defined processesin place elsewhere in the business to enable outsourcing of our softwaretesting department overseas, as well as 100% of our accountingdepartment, giving us the capabilities of a much larger company in thoseareas albeit at lower costs. Those benefits wouldn‟t be possible withoutrigorous processes born of excellence in project management. We‟re now a
business that has virtualized itself globally. We‟re convinced that this addstremendous value for our customers and that it cannot be done without goodprocess definition, planning and execution.Some of these processes have enabled us to achieve understanding ofour profitability on a per-person per-project basis, using the sametechnology that we sell to others, thereby making us a showcase for our ownsoftware.At present, we have only a few people who have been through formal PMItraining, but we want 10% of the company to become PMPs. We can see thevalue it adds every day, and we want more. We‟ve applied the principles indevelopment, marketing, partnering, vendor management and even in salesto generally great effect. Our software development process has alwaysbeen what is now commonly termed „agile,‟ and we want to be very carefulin introducing too much rigor there. The right amount of process for the taskat hand – balance – is always of utmost importance at Journyx.The incorporation of “just enough” project management processes into everyaspect of our company operations over the last few years has enabled us tomove from being a startup to becoming a scalable organization. We nowhave the plans and the confidence that we can execute these planssuccessfully. For example, we have tools in place that alert us to problems,like projects going over budget. This is not to say that we‟re a perfectcompany and that all our problems are solved. They‟re not. But we have aplan for improvement now and the confidence to execute it.Reference Link: http://www.hr.com/en/app/blog/2012/02/from-startup-to-scalable-organization_gz8x8y6h.html