02 Nov What Does ‘Adding Value’ Actually Mean?
Everywhere you look people and organisations are saying:
“Our Services adds value.”
“We add value to any engagement.”
“We look at adding value to our customers.”
So what does ‘Adding Value’ actually mean?
1. We Add Value because we are cheaper than our competitors
This doesn’t add value. Where a project has under-estimated the cost and effort, then the value add is getting this project over the line without exceeding poorly estimated budget – this sets a precedence that getting work done cheap is more important than a quality result and each project from that point onwards will have to be done cheaper and cheaper.
2. We bring our experts to your project and add value
Yes! this can add value but it depends on how the experts are used: If the project is running behind schedule or veering off target, then bringing in some SME’s will add some short-term value by helping to bring the project back on track, but only if the lessons are learnt as to why the project fell behind schedule or veered off target.
If the experts are brought onto a project but kept separate from the team (i.e. There’s a pod of 4 desks set aside in the corner of the room for that team to sit together and work on the project) then where’s the value add?
3. Automation adds value
Yes, automation can definitely add value but again it depends on how it’s handled:
- Automation to speed up testing on a project or to achieve a specified delivery date can add an amount of value, but if there is no future planning on how this automation will be used and maintained post go-live?
- If all the IP remains with the service provider and is not transferred to the customer then the only value with automation is keeping the provider in work for future projects.
If all the IP remains with the service provider and is not transferred to the customer then the only value with automation is keeping the provider in work for future projects
We believe that adding value to our customers and our customers’ customers means becoming a real part of the team. If it’s muddy, you should be the first to get covered in mud.
- You don’t add value sitting on the side, saying “I wouldn’t do that” or “you won’t catch me doing that.”
- Value is not measured during the project, it’s measured after the project goes live.
Some of the questions I’ve used in the past to measure the value testing has provided
- Has the application performed as expected in production?
- What has the feedback been from the end users (customers)?
- Has there been an increase in business since the application was launched?
- the number of end users (customers) increased?
- Have you been able to reuse the testing artefacts on another project?
If the answer to these questions are all positive THEN you’ve added value to the customer and to their customers.
So sit down with your customers and really get to know what value means to them and then we can truly say ‘We Add Value to our Customers’.