Written by Kevin Heisey
on October 12, 2021

Organizational transformations of your processes, technology and systems can benefit from Independent Verification and Validation (IV&V) assessments to verify the process and validate that new products, systems or services meet your customer or Stakeholder needs. IV&V support throughout a transformation ensures your strategy and execution lead to on-time, on-budget and successful outcomes. Yet every transformation is unique - some are small programs and projects that require rapid, short-term IV&V support, while others are large, long-term, multi-year programs that require ongoing IV&V engagement.

All IV&V engagements should identify gaps or redundancies in processes, ensure well-defined and meaningful metrics and assess a clear understanding of problem space and requirements. Long-term programs, however, truly benefit from ongoing assessments that occur at different milestones throughout the phases of the transformation lifecycle. Starting early and continuing iteratively provides teams with recommendations, improvements and guidance from the very beginning of the transformation and validates the implementation of these recommendations as the program moves from phase to phase.

What are common challenges that should be assessed during long-term IV&V programs?

People & Scale - Large programs cross organizational boundaries, Management teams and Stakeholder groups. It is necessary to have alignment, agreement on business outcomes and robust collaboration among Stakeholders.

Visibility - Lack of visibility among teams can lead to undefined and unresolved dependencies. Cross-team, cross-unit dependencies must be clearly mapped and considered during program planning. Using tools such as Program Boards and Portfolio Kanban can help bring in this visibility.

Communication & Collaboration - For large programs, communication and collaboration among disparate teams is vital. Any communication gaps can lead to timeline failures. Large programs can be better facilitated through the creation of multiple Value Streams that provide opportunities to map dependencies and foster collaboration.

Planning - Large programs imply that planning and roadmapping are done at multiple levels, which is essential to meet the short-term, near-term and long-term goals. Lack of planning and roadmapping can lead to schedule slippages and missed timelines. Lack of decentralized decision-making also leads to issues in planning as ground-level views are ignored.

Collaboration with Shared Services - Lack of alignment among Development and Shared Services/ Infrastructure units leads to delivery issues. Embedding Infrastructure and Shared Services members within Development teams can help avoid some of these delays. Alternatively, establishing a dedicated team with focused capacity towards the solution can also help.

Large and complex transformations should have a relentless focus on continuous improvement at each stage of the Program Lifecycle to achieve the best results and meet desired business outcomes. IV&V identifies areas for improvement and helps your organization implement recommendations and guidance as you go in order to get the most rapid results and optimal value from your transformation.