The review of the PROJECT to PRODUCT book continues from Value Stream Management with the Flow Framework™, with a focus on value stream metrics to track the flow of business value in our software development lifecycle.

2018.11.09 WS - Add Flow Framework™ image and update content.

The Flow Framework™ is a new framework created by Mik Kersten, CEO of Tasktop. It helps us bridge business and engineering with a common language and create transparency and a feedback loop by embracing the Value Stream Metrics.

Copyright © 2018 Tasktop Technologies Incorporated. All rights reserved. Published with permission.

The Flow Metrics is based on the four flow items (features, defects, risks, and debts), which help us measure velocity of business value using measures that are meaningful to business and engineering – we are finally bridging the gap that frameworks such as SAFe and Scaled Agile have focused on.

Value Stream Flow Efficiency

The book covers these key aspects of Value Stream Metrics:

  • Flow Distribution – track the distribution of features, defects, risks, and debts. New products typically need a larger set of features and non-production experiments usually have a low set of risks.
  • Flow Velocity – measure size of flow items delivered (pulled) by customers. Inherited from the Agile concept of velocity.
  • Flow Time – like cycle time, measure completed work from a flow items active to done state.
  • Flow Load – measures work in progress (WIP) to ensure we avoid over utilising the value streams.
  • Flow Efficiency – measures the ratio of productive to waiting time. It enables us to fine tine and optimise the value streams through a productivity lens.
  • Connect to Business Results – value, cost, quality, and happiness are the four business result buckets we can use to correlate investments with business performance.

Again, the book discusses invaluable case studies from BMW, Equifax, Nokia, and Microsoft, which links the value of the Flow Framework™ effectively with real-world examples. As others, we have tried a variety of dashboards and reports to connect the Ranger program with the business. Often in vain – as there is a gap between engineering, leadership, and our users.

Figure - Example dashboard that means everything to the Ranger engineers, but zip-zero to business ☹

Based on what we have covered to date, the Flow Framework™ would help us bridge the gap.

Looking forward to Part III of the book, which concludes with the Value Stream Network. It is the magic glue that connects the business with software delivery.

References


The Flow FrameworkTM is a framework created by Mik Kersten, CEO of Tasktop Technologies Incorporated (“Tasktop”). The Flow FrameworkTM diagrams, images, graphics and other materials referenced herein in relation to the Flow FrameworkTM is protected by copyright laws and may not be copied, modified or distributed without the express written permission of Tasktop.

Tasktop® and the Flow FrameworkTM are trademarks of Tasktop Technologies Incorporated.