The Gartner MQ for Enterprise Agile Planning is hot off the presses and for the eighth consecutive year, CollabNet VersionOne, now Digital.ai, is a Magic Quadrant Leader. To find out what makes Digital.ai’s Enterprise-scale Agile solutions so strong and durable, I sat down with David Williams, head of strategy for the company.
David Williams, VP of Strategy & Platform Product Management for Digital.ai, has more than 25 years’ experience managing products and successfully defining and driving business and product strategies in existing, new, and emerging technology markets in both small startups and large multibillion-dollar portfolio software companies.
Terri Delfino (TD): Eight years as a prime provider of Enterprise-scale Agile solutions. How has the company stayed in front for so long in a very competitive market?
David Williams (DW): Nothing moves faster than a technology market and Agile is no different. To stay ahead, we’ve done 3 very important things: We’ve listened to our customers and evolved with their needs; we’ve continuously invested in our Agile solutions, adding new innovations all the time; and we’ve remained open and, well agile, so we can adapt to the tools and frameworks our customers work with.
TD: Tell me about the latest innovations in Digital.ai’s Agile management solution.
DW: Our Enterprise Agile solutions are built from the ground up to be scalable, collaborative, and provide a level of end-to-end visibility you can’t get in other products. Over the past year, we’ve continued to focus our investment on adding enterprise-scale capabilities to our solutions, notably expanding our scaling support via enterprise agile frameworks and connecting SAFe development value streams to DevOps pipelines.
TD: You mentioned your ability to adapt/adopt to different frameworks. Which ones do you support today?
DW: We want our customers to be working with the best tools and approaches for the job, no matter what they are or where they come from. Toward that end, our objective has always been to be a best-in-class solution that works with other best-in-class offerings. We fully support the Scrum, Kanban, XP, SAFe, and Spotify methodologies, and we integrate and interoperate with many of the tools our customers’ already use, across all segments. This means our customers don’t have to rip and replace tools that are working for them and they can adopt whatever methodology is best for their environment.
TD: CollabNet VersionOne was recently acquired and combined with XebiaLabs and Arxan to become Digital.ai. How will this impact your Enterprise Agile solutions and the customer who use them?
DW: First and foremost, we remain committed to our Enterprise-scale Agile capabilities. They are a cornerstone of our business today and they will remain that way as we bring them together with other capabilities to provide customers with even more value.
For example, at Digital.ai we’re bringing CollabNet VersionOne’s Enterprise-scale Agile Planning and Delivery capabilities together with XebiaLabs’ marketing-leading Application Release Orchestration and Deployment Automation solutions, providing customers with an end-to-end Agile + DevOps toolchain that gives them visibility into the entire development value stream.
TD: Digital.ai is about Value Stream Management and getting from outputs to outcomes. How does this align with your Enterprise Agile solutions?
DW: True Value Stream Management is about knowing you are delivering business value to your customers and being able to measure that value. To achieve this, organizations must align their development and business value streams and shift from focusing on IT/engineering outputs to business outcomes.
Getting there is a process. It starts with value stream mapping of the customer journey and breaking down silos to enable efficient agile planning and information sharing. Then it moves into DevOps – connecting pipelines and orchestrating delivery activities across defined value stream settings and policies. Next, as the organization begins to focus on outcomes over outputs, processes are optimized and governance (security and compliance controls) are implemented to improve decision making and reduce risk. In the final phase, the organization can prioritize, plan, and track delivered value to the business from concept through customer experience, realizing true Value Stream Management.
Digital.ai offers enterprises a path to true Value Stream Management and our extensive end-to-end solution portfolio enables us to meet our customers wherever they are on their journey. We can start by ensuring their foundation is solid, their delivery pipeline is complete and connected and application security is not an afterthought, and provide the information needed to make informed real-time business decisions.
TD: In closing, what do you want people to know about Digital.ai’s Enterprise-scale Agile solutions?
DW: We have brought together leading technologies to deliver a solution that, for the first time in this industry, provides a top-to-bottom platform approach to agile and Value Stream Management that enables organizations to focus on the value being delivered by the business.
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