This post is from the XebiaLabs blog and has not been updated since the original publish date.
Customers Rule -- Get Used to It
The might of the Customer -- a ridiculous idea just a few years ago -- is felt everywhere these days. No corporation is immune. No boardroom can dodge the topic. Customers have gone from being faceless nobodies to ‘those who must be obeyed.’The so-called ‘Age of the Customer’ is touching every facet of corporate life, including application delivery. In this new age, customers rule and companies follow, forcing companies to deliver applications that meet the desires and needs of customers. If companies don’t comply rapidly and precisely with what their customers want, they know their competitors will. To respond to the customer-driven demands for better products and services, companies are changing their approach to delivering applications. The traditional approach to application delivery -- do one big revision or introduce a major new feature over a short period -- is rapidly being replaced by a new, faster and smarter approach, Continuous Delivery (CD). The core idea of CD is to create a repeatable, reliable and incrementally improving process for taking software from concept to customer. Organizations today are under intense pressure to deliver software and value to their businesses and customer faster than ever. That pressure is forcing structural and strategic changes in how companies delivery applications. A major, perhaps ‘the major’ source of pressure comes from the Customer. Indeed, some believe we have entered the Age of the Customer, where customers rule and companies follow, forcing companies to deliver applications that meet the desires and needs of customers. If companies don’t comply rapidly and precisely with what their customers want, they know their competitors will. While the Customer may be the major vector of change, it is far from being the only one. Internally, companies are wrestling with various change vectors, notably those involving processes, architectures and tools. Innovative companies have already embraced Agile, DevOps, automation and Continuous Delivery.