Case Study: Portfolio Prioritisation and the “Fuzzy Front End”


  • Joshua Arnold, Black Swan Farming

Addressing many of the problems in software development require changes upstream of development – where almost nobody is paying attention. If the UK public sector is going to improve the quality, speed and value of software solutions delivered we need to consider what is happening before it gets anywhere near writing code – the “Fuzzy Front-End”.

So how do we improve the way we prioritise to ensure that we’re delivering value quickly and not wasting our precious capacity to innovate? Since economics is all about scarcity, we can turn to economics to help us quickly discover, nurture and speed up the delivery of value.

In this talk we will discuss how Cost of Delay enabled a Fortune 500 company to discover, nurture and speed up the delivery of value across $100m portfolio to:

Improve Prioritisation – by using CD3 (Cost of Delay Divided by Duration)
Improve Decision-making – by making the economic trade-offs visible
Change the Focus – from efficiency and cost to speed and value
Drawing on many years in the UK public sector (Environment Agency, Student Loans Company, DWP, DFID) I’ll share some experience of bringing the “fuzzy front end” into focus and aligned toward faster time-to-market and improved return on investment.

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Joshua Arnold, Black Swan Farming

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Date Thu 26th February 2015

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