People Analytics for IT Services and Software Product Companies
Software Product companies and IT Services firms rely on their employees, their most important asset, for profitability, higher Customer Satisfaction ratings and greater Employee Engagement. Software companies, Services and Products, deploy technology and processes that estimate effort and status of deliverables, at individual as well as at team level. Typical project execution consists of requirements definition, design, breakdown into tasks, effort estimation, task allocation and schedules, and tracking schedule variance. Output isn’t always quantifiable in software projects, but other metrics, like Function Points (waterfall model) and Sprint Velocity (agile model), can be used for output assessment. Is this what is known as IT services service management? Unfortunately, no.
Despite best efforts, most projects face delays and quality issues. It isn’t always possible to identify process or structural issues that affect the team’s ability to deliver the best possible outcome. Also, there is no realistic way of determining whether the same team can deliver more output in the same time. The biggest hurdle to productivity improvement in software engineering teams is the lack of accurate insights into the exact work time and distribution by activity. Organizations depend on relatively outdated technology.
Entry/exit systems, manual time-sheets and relying on the allocated headcount to measure project utilization are not efficient methods. Moreover, these are time-consuming and highly error-prone. Software Product companies don’t even use time sheets and use entry/exit systems only for security purposes. A highly talented and knowledge based workforce sees the trend increasingly shifting towards flexible timings and work from home option which makes it even more difficult to quantify effort. A time management software is the need of the hour. In IT Services companies Time & Material (T&M) contracts form over 2/3rd of all projects. Here, productivity is often not a priority, because higher productivity means a smaller team and loss of revenue or slower growth.
However, CEOs who think strategically are aware that clients want value. They know that there is intense competition that leads to vendor churn, and hence irrespective of the business model, it is vital to build high quality teams that exceed customer expectations. Sapience is a unique People Analytics @ Work solution which provides the desired Automated Visibility into individual and team effort, at every level of the business. This continuous and dynamic fine-tuning of effort ensures that the team is fully engaged and properly aligned with project needs. A situation which requires post-facto analysis of what went wrong doesn’t arise in this case. Software firms (both Product and Services) can raise their game in each of these critical aspects of the business:
• Best Effort: Sapience captures employee and team effort (work time and breakup across activities) as it varies over time and project phases and sprints. This is automated and does not require user inputs. It allows correlation of Effort with available Output metrics, thereby delivering never before 3600 visibility into productivity and the insights to drive improvements.
• Talent Utilization: There is always a demand from line managers for more headcount. When project deadlines slip, the first reason cited is of insufficient people. There is also the problem of talent hoarding where managers may be reluctant to let go of their people even if workload has reduced. This may cause an increase in attrition as people look for more challenges. With exact utilization information, staffing decisions become very objective. Reviews are data driven, and it becomes apparent whether the same team can deliver better results, or whether there is scope to transition some resources to other groups that need them.
• Employee Engagement: Besides utilization differences between groups, Sapience often reveals a significant variance in workload within the group. Managers tend to rely heavily on 20-30% of their “go-to” team members. This stresses them while others feel disengaged. Through improved work allocation, you can elevate your stars to more challenging work and energize the whole team with sufficient interesting work.
The never before work trends and analytics across many different dimensions as delivered by Sapience is a game changer for IT Services and Software Product firms, significantly enhancing delivery excellence, employee engagement and the company’s bottom line.
Ability to capture team Effort and correlate with Output provides a 3600 view into productivity, thereby increasing value creation from the same team and boosting financial performance
Employees get a Sapience Buddy app on their PC that is their guide on the path to productivity and wellness
Automated tracking and analysis of team effort and variations between Top 20% and the rest helps identify areas of improvement in workload distribution and employee engagement
By tracking time on core and non-core work, it becomes possible to drive high impact structural and process changes
Powerful analytics engine for comparing business units, projects, phases/sprints, teams, technology, roles, etc. enables head to head comparisons and bright spot analysis
Resource utilization trends and reports result in data driven decisions regarding staffing and hiring
Timesheet automation with prefilled timesheets including total work time and breakup across activities and tasks, reduces user time and ensures 100% timesheet compliance
Make productivity improvements through mindful work fun for employees with the Gamification Platform
Link Badges won from gamification platform to the Corporate Rewards program
For more details visit – http://www.sapience.net
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