When establishing workflow processes, many enterprise organizations wrestle with balancing their approach between one that’s standardized and one that’s more flexible.
It’s a tough choice: too much standardization can impede innovation and agility, but too much flexibility leads to inconsistency across teams.
The standardization-or-flexibility dilemma also extends to enterprise tooling selection:
- A standard tool reinforces process consistency, provides the means to gather conforming information and is easier to implement.
- A more flexible tooling approach recognizes that often one tool doesn’t suit all, allowing each team to choose the tool that’s right for them.
As our interview with Vertafore reveals, adopting the right approach with the right tool can deliver both standardization and flexibility.
How Vertafore Balances Standardization and Flexibility
The IT organization at Vertafore, the leading provider of integration technology and information solutions for the insurance industry, has an extremely heterogeneous technology environment, making a one-size-fits-all approach impractical. Previous attempts to implement standard tools across the organization were deemed “tantamount to organ rejection.”
Recognizing the need to give each team the freedom and control to work in a “context-driven” way, Vertafore looked to Lean-Agile principles to cultivate an environment that successfully balances standardization and flexibility.
First, Vertafore created a Lean-Agile framework. Instead of imposing a standard workflow process, the company defined a common set of principles and goals to improve organizational effectiveness, letting each team determine how best to achieve them.
Next, Vertafore chose LeanKit. By adopting LeanKit, teams at Vertafore gained the flexibility they needed to own the way they get work done, as well as the underlying consistency of a standardized data model to track the movement of their work and generate rollup reports.
As a result, Vertafore is able to achieve its goals of developing and delivering products faster while enabling teams to experiment with ways to improve their effectiveness.