In the modern Agile landscape, organisations are constantly striving to balance their focus on outcome-driven results and output-focused execution.
The concept of a platform team has gained traction in recent years as businesses seek to improve productivity and streamline processes. Stream-aligned teams concentrate on delivering customer value, aligning their work with specific products or services. Conversely, platform teams provide shared services, tools, and infrastructure to support these value-driven teams. Both types of teams play crucial roles in ensuring the organisation’s success. By incorporating both stream-aligned teams and platform teams, businesses can achieve the optimal combination of customer focus and efficient delivery structures.
The benefits of having both stream-aligned teams and platform teams include:
- Increased Customer Focus: Stream-aligned teams foster a customer-centric approach by aligning their objectives with specific products or services. This outcome-driven focus ensures that the teams prioritise delivering value to customers, leading to higher satisfaction and loyalty.
- Enhanced Efficiency: Platform teams, focused on output, develop and maintain shared services and infrastructure that multiple stream-aligned teams can utilise. This centralised approach minimises redundant efforts, accelerates delivery times, and ultimately reduces costs.
- Balanced Prioritisation: By separating platform teams from stream-aligned teams, organisations can more effectively balance their objectives. Platform teams can prioritise their work based on the needs and priorities of the value-driven teams they service, ensuring that the underlying infrastructure remains agile and up-to-date.
- Improved Scalability: The existence of platform teams allows for a more scalable foundation upon which stream-aligned teams can build. This enables rapid expansion without requiring each team to create its own solutions, increasing overall agility.
- Cross-Functional Collaboration: Combining stream-aligned teams with platform teams promotes collaboration and knowledge sharing. The platform team’s shared services and tools encourage communication between various value-driven teams, resulting in better alignment of goals and objectives.
- Streamlined Onboarding: With both platform and stream-aligned teams in place, organisations can simplify the onboarding process for new projects and teams. Platform teams provide easy access to shared resources, while stream-aligned teams maintain a clear focus on customer value.
- Reduced Technical Debt: Platform teams help to manage and maintain shared services and infrastructure, reducing technical debt across the organisation. This ensures that the underlying technology is up-to-date, secure, and efficient, enabling stream-aligned teams to focus on delivering value.
By leveraging both stream-aligned teams and platform teams, organisations can effectively balance outcome-focused results and output-focused execution. This dual approach creates an agile environment that emphasises customer value while maintaining the efficiency and scalability necessary for long-term success.