Pulling It All Together
Across a variety of posts (see links below), we covered many different areas of consideration that should be taken into account in order to formulate a platform decision.
We started with a discussion about platform fit. There, we identified key platform differentiators across three general areas of platform capability, namely structural/organizational, project management, and configuration/administration capabilities.
Then we continued with a discussion about platform viability. There, we indicated how user sentiment can sometimes be directly attributed to (or caused by) specific platform capabilities themselves.
And finally, we presented a fairly extensive overview about platform impact. There, we indicated how certain platform-related productivity levers directly affect economic impact, and how certain work management characteristics may influence the values we might place on those productivity levers.
Now, let’s try to pull all of that together. Let’s combine everything we saw in our earlier discussions about fit, viability, impact: are there any interesting observations we might glean? Absolutely yes!
Differentiators vs. Productivity Levers
When we pull it all together, we get a consolidated summary such as the one shown above.
This deceivingly simple matrix ties the platform differentiators we discussed in the earlier posts (see links below), to the productivity levers that drive impact.
We say deceivingly simple because, of course, all of these differentiators are extremely important in any carefully-considered platform decision.
But even more significantly: it turns out that some of those capabilities are particularly well suited, and extraordinarily influential, to reduce the incidence and magnitude of unnecessary output, while other capabilities are especially applicable to decrease the amount of work needed to generate output.
In other words: these key platform capabilities not only enable an operational system of record, and propel user adoption — they also drive economic impact, or as some would call it, ROI.
Thinking Beyond Functional Capability
When considering platform capabilities, certainly there are functional aspects of each platform we should take into account. Specifically, we should consider how it behaves, how it can help users in their day-to-day activities, and how it can propel adoption.
But as we see in the chart above, those functional capabilities also directly drive productivity — which drives ROI.
In a way, functional capabilities are like financial instruments, waiting to be invested and begging to be harvested — in the form of tangible returns.
When making a platform decision, we think it helps to think of platform capabilities that way — in terms of the direct impact they can make toward delivering financial returns. Which is all the more reason to make platform decisions judiciously and wisely, with an eye toward return — like a CFO would.
We’ve hardly scratched the surface — so much goes into a carefully considered platform decision! Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. And, as a next step, we invite you to check out some of our other posts:
- Platform Decisions: When & How to Build a Case
- Platform Decisions: Evaluating Fit
- Platform Decisions: Assessing Viability
- Platform Decisions: Estimating Impact
- Platform Decisions: Testing Assumptions
- Platform Decisions: Differentiators & Productivity Levers
- Platform Decisions: Thoughts About Change
- Platform Decisions: Getting All The Juice