Advicent planned several NaviPlan upgrades designed to make this highly versatile financial planning software even more intuitive for users. In order to accomplish its goals in a timely manner, Advicent partnered with Centare to not only focus on modernizing the NaviPlan Administrative Tool, but also to introduce improvements to Advicent’s already strong software product development process.
Centare’s solution centered around exemplifying team-based agility as we solved the business problem set before us: creating a new administration tool for the NaviPlan system. Here are some of the ways the team provided Advicent what they needed:
Cross-functionality The team contained all roles necessary to successfully complete the project work. This expedited product delivery and provided an example of team-based communication and autonomy.
Organizational Engagement and Collaboration Advicent embraced project engagement, prioritizing project requests and meetings. Because of this, the product met needs throughout the organization and a large number of Advicent employees observed how the team worked.
Usability Driven Usability testing, refinement with users, and a focus on user workflow maximized our ability to inspect and adapt based on user’s needs. It also provided an example of lean design techniques that can be used to make a product great.
Knowledge Sharing Advicent’s presence and open-mindedness gave the Centare team the opportunity to share in many ways, including: agile principles, UX design and Lean UX principles, technical recommendations, code reviews, lunch and learn sessions, etc. In short, Advicent received much more from the partnership than just a software product because of their engagement with the team and willingness to learn from others.
Demonstrate Agility The team delivered working software every Sprint. This incremental approach allowed for changes in direction with little cost, rapid responses to user feedback, and made progress continually transparent to all stakeholders. This also provided real-world examples of the benefits of agile software delivery.
The end result was an elegant technical solution that met the needs of internal users, external users, and Advicent technical teams. Moreover, Advicent’s high level of engagement throughout the project led to the results they were hoping for - multiple layers of the organization had interacted with the project team and now have a better picture of what an autonomous, fully cross-functional team is able to accomplish. They also have practical tips on how to move their teams toward higher agility through their collaborative engagement with the Centare team. Using momentum from this project, Advicent leadership was able to use this engagement as a springboard to support their team toward further growth and accomplishment.