Technology companies generally have an R&D department where people work with development. It’s taken for granted, just like having a finance department. But have you, as a manager, really thought about what you want to achieve with the R&D resources? It may seem like a silly question; Of course you know what the R&D department does and why. Or do you?
In the 1990s, Toyota and Scania developed the Pulse-room concept, or Obeya as it is called in Japan. The pulse room is a solution to the problem with weak management control when organising work as projects. This problem was highlighted by several research programs during the 1980s. The effect of an Obeya was immediate for Toyota; in some few years they were able to develop the hybrid car Prius, and new brands as Lexus and Scion. It took their competitors decades to catch up.
It is often hard for a management team to get an up to date overview of the company’s projects. The projects tend to slip through the grip because the checkpoints are few and far between, the projects generate largely “invisible” results, and resources go in and out of projects over time.
Pulse in a company with one R&D location will have one pulse room. But what to do when there are many locations around the world where development is done? Unlike a hierarchical line organization, Pulse is an organizational model that can easily handle “multi-site” situations.
The Agile Pulse App promotes behaviours that shorten development time and maximize throughput.
For a business to be agile, it isn’t enough to have agile projects. You also need agile governance that can speed up decision making, deal with overload, queues and deviations, and enable you to work continuously on your strategies.
Product development as an adaptive walk is a new way to manage uncertainty. Predictions far into the future are highly uncertain. Pulse support short lead time.
The best way to create cross-functional work is with the help of a fractal, scale-free network. This kind of an organization is fast and agile.
Resource shortages are one of the most common problems I encounter when analyzing a project business. This is also the easiest problem to solve. Not only is it simple, the solution is also largely free. All businesses have a hidden resource pool that is just waiting to be put to use.