GigaOm Radar for Value Stream Management (VSM)v3.01

Table of Contents

  1. Summary
  2. Market Categories and Deployment Types
  3. Key Criteria Comparison
  4. GigaOm Radar
  5. Vendor Insights
  6. Analyst’s Take
  7. About Jon Collins

1. Summary

Value stream management (VSM) is the go-to method for software process improvement, a requirement for organizations looking to deliver on their digital transformation goals. VSM ensures the value of technology delivery, defined by benefits minus costs. VSM tools and practices remove bottlenecks, improve efficiency, and enable organizations to better understand and manage costs. However, delivering faster and cheaper means nothing if the resulting outputs are not of value to the business.

We recognize that the latter—business value—needs to be predicated on the former—process efficiency. Engineering management has a clear and present concern with getting on top of what development teams are working on. At the same time, business leaders are looking to address what they see as the black box of technology delivery, seeking to measure and monitor the bang they are getting for their buck.

At their core, VSM tools combine data integration and dashboards, pulling together information from continuous integration/continuous delivery (CI/CD) and other development tooling and enabling users to see what is going on. Building on this foundation, vendors offer capabilities to better visualize and interpret the data, provide best practice insights and guidance, enable automation, and so on. For organizations looking to build a coherent picture and move away from unwieldy spreadsheets and customized business intelligence (BI) tools, there’s a lot to like about VSM.

The right VSM tooling will depend on an organization’s IT maturity, size of business, and strategic direction. Some companies may be looking to improve visibility to help managers make better decisions; others may want to consolidate practices and standards across lines of business. Some organizations may be better suited to a general purpose tool; others may need one designed for their specific vertical or use case.

In reviewing solutions, it’s important to keep in mind that there are no universal “best” or “worst” offerings; there are aspects of every solution that might make it a better or worse fit for specific customer requirements. How a solution aligns with customer needs and context is an important purchase consideration. Prospective customers should consider their current and future needs when comparing solutions and vendor roadmaps.

This is our third year evaluating the VSM space in the context of our Key Criteria and Radar reports. As in previous years, we put less emphasis on how the vendor categorizes its solution (such as value stream intelligence or similar), and more on whether they fit the table stakes for this report—capabilities widely adopted and well implemented in the sector. All solutions included in this Radar report meet the following table stakes:

  • Value stream mapping
  • Toolchain integration
  • Efficiency metrics
  • Visualization tools
  • Process guidance

This GigaOm Radar report highlights key VSM vendors from the perspective of both appropriateness and forward direction and equips IT decision-makers with the information needed to select the best fit for their business and use case requirements. In the corresponding GigaOm report “Key Criteria for Evaluating VSM Solutions,” we describe in more detail the capabilities and metrics that are used to evaluate vendors in this market.

How to Read this Report

This GigaOm report is one of a series of documents that helps IT organizations assess competing solutions in the context of well-defined features and criteria. For a fuller understanding, consider reviewing the following reports:

Key Criteria report: A detailed market sector analysis that assesses the impact that key product features and criteria have on top-line solution characteristics—such as scalability, performance, and TCO—that drive purchase decisions.

GigaOm Radar report: A forward-looking analysis that plots the relative value and progression of vendor solutions along multiple axes based on strategy and execution. The Radar report includes a breakdown of each vendor’s offering in the sector.

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