A System Simulation Itself
Enabled Discovery of a Solution
The Business Problem, Software Applications and People Stayed the Same
- for Two Years
This real life example of the value a system simulation enabled took place at a large global company.
Executives decided that significant growth would be achieved by cross selling profitable services to existing customers. One particular service was determined to be the most important because it was the most profitable in the entire company.
For two years, a project team with the same main people had tried to enable cross selling of this complex service through another application. However, they could not get it to work correctly.
Multiple attempted solutions failed during testing. They were not put into production.
The Impact of Using System Simulation
The business subject matter expert (SME) for the project simulated a related part of the department’s process using our approach and was presenting it in a group meeting with both business and IT representatives. As the SME was walking through the process under discussion, he stopped with an “Aha!” look on his face.
He said “I know why we have not been able to link the service we want to cross sell.” He then explained his insight to the group in a ten minute sidebar conversation.
As a direct result of using interactive visual system simulation, the root misconception that had plagued the team for two years, connecting to the wrong use case, became clear.
Note that in the Building Requirements Consensus™ Methodology
the term system applies to both business processes and software applications.
A Solution Became Clear
Additionally, a solution immediately became clear. Everyone in attendance agreed they could now write accurate requirements and get this functionality into production quickly.
They would then be able to meet the business objective and cross sell this highly profitable service.
How Did Simulation Enable the Discovery of this Insight?
The people involved in this project were the same over the two years. The insight was not the result of adding a new person.
We were invited to participate in this project because the program manager believed that a simulation approach would help this stalled project. We trained and mentored the team in the
Building Requirements Consensus™ Approach.
It is significant that we did not have any detailed prior knowledge about either the application this team was developing or the service they wanted to cross sell. We only had a 50,000 foot view of the department.
Additionally, on the day of this “Aha” moment, we did not know about the two year history. We learned about it afterward.
We emphasize our lack of prior knowledge in this domain because we did not bring any new domain knowledge to the team. We brought knowledge about simulation.
Using the system simulation itself enabled the discovery of this insight.
Simulation Itself Enabled the Discovery of this Insight
The simulation presented the same information the team had all along in a way that allowed them finally, after two years, to understand it. Because of
the medium used to document these requirements,
namely, simulation, the SME was able to discover a new connection in the information they already had in hand. This new connection solved a problem that had stumped the team for two years.
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