Welcome back to the latest edition of our #COETalks, in this series we explain what a Centre of Excellence is, why it’s so important to your business success and take a deep dive into some of the best practices we have discovered in our experience. In this video, we are in conversation with Stuart Burns, Principal Consultant at ABP and Luke Simpson, UK Technology Lead at ABP. They discussed some of the development standards and best practices we uphold at our own COEs.
What do Development Standards and Best Practices Mean for ABP?
For ABP our development standard start with creating a consistent way of writing a piece of code within the software we use. This allows us to create something that can be used across all areas of a business and ensures we have a consistent approach across all processes and projects.
What are the Benefit of Putting These Standards in Place?
There are a number of benefits that derive from having these standards in place. The first of these is reliability. We have a number of projects that we at ABP deliver and we want to make sure that these processes can run unsupervised or unattended with the need for minimal intervention. By holding our standards to the same high level across projects, we can be confident that we will see an improved success rate over time.
Another benefit is efficiency. We create a structure that can shorten the time taken to deliver on a project as well as minimise the risk of errors when the process goes live. All this helps us to be more efficient and to exceed customer expectations. We also benefit from maintainability. Our processes are easy to maintain and to update because our approach is consistent throughout the company. This means technical teams can quickly move from process to process and project to project, updating them as they go along.
Last but not least is cost. Due to the benefits, we’ve previously mentioned; reliability, efficiency and maintainability, we are able to lower the cost of development and maintenance of the processes we build and can pass these saving onto customers.
How do you Install These Standards Within a Company?
The two key areas are training and peer review quality assurance. For us, we ensure that all our developers are trained in and equipped with the best methodology to deliver the results and quality that our partners expect. We believe that training is key and that an understanding of what the mythology is and why it’s so important will allow us to simplify the work that will be carried out during day-to-day operations. We also have an in-house peer review quality assurance process. Having this means we are able to ensure that our standards are adhered to across all projects and processes we touch and in turn means our clients and partners can have confidence in us.
At ABP our training isn’t just a one-off piece of work. Our developers are constantly collaborating with our wider team and talking with each other about the best ways to work. We are also looking internally to how we can improve our standards and practices. We are also always looking at things from a technology point of view. The tools we use are constantly changing or updating, so we’re always looking at what new tools we need to introduce for our teams. In working with these automation technologies, this is one of the key lessons we have learnt. You can’t afford to stand still you have to ensure you are constantly evolving and constantly looking at how you can improve yourself and your work.