Building a clearer picture of digital demand | NTT DATA

Case Study - Tue, 12 May 2020 - 10 min read

Building a clearer picture of digital demand

A project for a fixed and mobile service provider led to much better management of demand, improved project visibility and made collaboration easier.

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Keeping the product development pipeline flowing freely

A joint venture between two communication network providers, the client is based in the Netherlands and was originally a cable TV operator until it was purchased to form part of a company providing a quad play offer. The company was finding it difficult to manage demand for its teams to develop new products and services, with the cable and mobile sides of the business competing for attention. 

To solve this challenge, NTT DATA was invited to advise how the company could improve its demand management process. NTT DATA was also asked how the client could assess good quality requirements to create a realistic product pipeline and a healthy and consistent product lifecycle. 

Because the partner companies originally had different processes, the first priority was to consolidate these to create a common set of processes that everyone could use. NTT DATA helped the client assess demand and the effort needed to provide the required features of the product or service.

 

“It is great to finally have one digital environment which will help us to achieve a better overview of all digital projects/changes. The transition went very smoothly and didn’t lead to big problems within the teams. The support was great, so colleagues could easily find the right NTT DATA expert to solve their issues very quickly.” 

Digital Demand Manager Fixed and Mobile Services Provider

 

The client’s management actively sought NTT DATA’s guidance, trusting it to provide the support they needed. 

Building a single JIRA toolset

The next step was to advise on the toolsets in use. Based on JIRA and Atlassian software development tools, the challenge was that different JIRA instances were in use, one on the cloud and one on premises. These could not connect, meaning collaboration was virtually impossible.  

To improve this situation, NTT DATA performed a JIRA health check. This involved gaining a detailed understanding of what the client had, what tools were used and advising on a method to consolidate and upgrade these tools, allowing better reporting and collaboration.  

The two partners’ JIRA tools were consolidated into a single cloud-based solution. Users were concerned that the switchover could cause them to lose data, but these fears were assuaged by NTT DATA’s thorough planning.  

Each instance was merged both on and off-premises and then migrated to the cloud. Although Atlassian has tools to merge systems, these could not cater for the complexity of mixed and server environments. NTT DATA put substantial effort into developing the best way to merge and migrate the JIRA tools while keeping them running. 

No loss of data during migration

Different JIRA instances were in use, one on the cloud and one on premises.

Achieved in only one day

Our innovative approach allowed the migration to be performed on one day, a public holiday.

More efficient demand management

The process also allows more clarity, giving staff a better idea of what’s required of them.

Migration in one day

The major success of the project was that the entire migration was achieved with no loss of data, despite the systems being in daily use and generating a large number of tickets. In a conventional project, the system would be down for days at a time, but an innovative approach allowed the migration to be performed on one day, a public holiday.  

Fresh downloads were placed into a temporary staging area. Data was then merged and deduplicated and migrated into a new cloud domain. Well before the actual migration, extensive rehearsal sessions were performed over two weeks to ensure that everything could go without a hitch. Practice data downloads, merges and validation ensured data sets were ready to be exported and methodologies were all fully tested in advance, as well preparing staff for the change.

A better view of change

The successful completion of this stage gave a better view of the demand and reporting standards were brought in to give more visibility. Previously, PowerPoint was used for reporting meetings, a time-consuming method that could not adequately keep up with rapid changes. The result was that people would not have an up-to-date picture during reporting meetings.  

A change management process was brought in to allow staff to create reports directly from JIRA. Meetings can now be run from JIRA itself, so that even changes made just before the meeting can be included.  

This greater visibility allows people to view the organisation as one entity, with one demand funnel. They can see the load on teams and create roadmaps.  

Training was another important aspect, with staff being coached in the demand management function as well as resource planning. NTT DATA also helped them on financial business cases and understanding how to assess features based on benefits analysis. This ensured staff could continue to run these functions once NTT DATA stepped back from the project.

 

The project led to much more efficient demand management for the client, ensuring features can be developed sooner.

Simpler, more efficient management

The project has produced a much more efficient demand management process for the client. This ensures features can be developed sooner as they spend less time in the pipeline.  

The process also allows more clarity, giving staff a better idea of what’s required of them. Requirements at each stage are hard coded into JIRA in a series of stage gates - knowing which stage they are at makes it easier for staff to manage their own time and perform the right amount of work at the right stage. In this way, they are better able to meet stakeholder expectations.  

Cooperation and ‘buy-in’ from the client’s staff were vital factors in the success of the project. Although initially users were concerned about issues such as data loss, NTT DATA worked to gain their trust, exciting them with the possibilities that the project held and ultimately leading to enthusiastic cooperation.  

The client’s management actively sought NTT DATA’s guidance, trusting it to provide the support they needed.

Case Study - 10 min read

Building a clearer picture of digital demand

Keeping the product development pipeline flowing freely

Download Case Study

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