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  • Predicting Banking Implementation Failure with the Duke

    We all remember John Wayne, fondly referred as the ‘Duke’, as a quintessential hard working, well intentioned cowboy, who seemed to overcome impossible odds through dogged determination and hard work in his movies. But given today’s dynamic and volatile banking technology environment would the same “cowboy ways” work? Banking tech teams, vendors and in-house personnel alike, are full of hard working, dedicated folks, but the track record for implementations seems to be getting worse.

    Want to know how the ’Duke’ would have gone about it and would he be successful…


    Fast tracked to today, John Wayne is now a corporate honcho who helps large Banks overcome Digital Implementations’ challenges. So, John Wayne has gradually settled down in today’s era, trading in his 6-shooter for an iPhone and is now a technologist who wants to innovate his organization to drive and maintain competitiveness.

    One day John was tasked with ensuring a banking technology implementation goes live on time with great quality while being under budget. And, this was so what the Duke loved, a difficult mission, fraught with danger, where the odds are stacked against him. Giving him a similar thrill of the Wild West, John assembled his posse and gave assurances that he will, once again, beat the odds.

    The Duke, wise and experienced, knew the threats he had to navigate… a disparate list of vendors and systems, demanding customer expectations, internal resource scarcity and a marauding band of regulators. After a few sleepless nights by the campfire and some significant contemplation in the saloon, John realized that he has to “change his approach to change the game”. Since a laptop had replaced his Winchester, the Duke realized that technology can predict where “bandits” and other dangers in his project lay, and could effectively allocate his posse to eliminate those threats proactively.

    To help him redirect his troops John laid down a structure to formulate a, simple yet effective, solution to evaluate if the implementation was headed for a failure. Upon pondering John chalked out the posse folks who were responsible for any implementation which typically included:

    -Line of business

    -IT (dev& Infrastructure)

    -Testing teams

    -PMO

    -Migration teams(users & relevant data)

    He thought, and rightly though, that tracking the process outcomes and deliverables closely will help monitor the implementation at every milestone. Moreover, while he was meeting some technology experts, he learned the impact of data analytics and applied it well to develop an algorithm to accurately predict success or failure. With the help of these go-live experts he made his “Readiness Lasso”, a single metric, which gave him control over implementation outlaws making it easier to cut implementation time and cost. He designed the lasso (readiness metric) with the primary objective to discipline and monitor the right aspects of 5 key teams at every milestone. In short, the idea was to effectively predict implementation success before go-live using a readiness metric.

    The ‘Duke’ had indeed stood up to the challenge of predicting Digital Banking implementations’ success and could now showcase the solution to the world.

    The story doesn’t end here. You only know ‘what’ he did. Drop us a line at [email protected] to know more about ‘how’ the Duke designed his ‘Readiness Lasso’ to reign in the bandits hiding in digital banking implementations.

    May 7, 2019

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