At the core of the concept of "lean IT" is eliminating waste, focusing on creating value for the end-customer (either in the business or outside), using customer demand to drive process activity, and spinning a flywheel of continuous improvement. But these principles cannot live in a vacuum, devoid of understanding the business processes enabled by the IT solutions created to support them.
Effective allocation of IT resources, coupled with managing the processes enabled by IT-sanctioned solutions, is key to aligning those solutions with customer expectations and saving more money while developing them. Lean thinking — both in IT and, more broadly, the business — cultivates an environment for innovation and iteration around the configuration and delivery of processes.
A guiding question to set the stage for lean IT thinking: What is the best result that should be delivered to IT's customers? Evaluating each step within the process supported by a given solution — and working backward from desired result — will lead to insights around how IT teams can optimize app development and delivery to reduce costs, increase operational efficiency and effectively meet the needs of customers.
Low-code platforms for rapid application development, like Quick Base, help put lean IT principles into action. Citizen developers can build, customize and connect cloud apps without writing a single line of code. IT can give the business vehicles to move fast, while holding on to the master key. Take, for example, Ceva Sante Animale, whose CIO François Tricot used Quick Base as a platform for rapid application development to enable thousands of employees around the world and drive down IT costs by over 30%.
Interested in learning more about lean IT in practice? Watch the onDemand webinar, "Maximizing IT Investment," with Shawn Aruch, VP of IT at Vintage, a division of PR Newswire.
And with that, I'll leave you with a funny but poignant Dilbert comic I spotted in my colleague Davin Wilfrid's tweetstream.
— Davin Wilfrid (@dwilfrid) July 28, 2015