While some COEs’ focus is more towards the business process definition and improvement, Pega advocates a balanced focus on three areas – the “three legged stool” – while building a COE. They are the people, the process, and the technology.
People/Structure - You need to create the right mix of people who have the appropriate hard and soft skills, working together in a structure that supports effective communication and collaboration. Adaptability and willingness to change are critical qualities to look for when selecting members of the COE. You can’t expect to drive change in your organization if your team members are resistant to changing the way they work. Roles and responsibilities should be well defined so that members have a clear sense of ownership.
Process - Building the right process is about determining the way you are going to execute and putting the right methodology in place that is effective and repeatable. Pega recommends iterative methodologies that allow you to deliver business value quickly. This also means determining your COE’s terms and definitions, standards, and best practices.
Technology - Technology and architecture are critical to creating your shared infrastructure, the backbone of your BPM initiatives. You need to have the proper technology with a prescriptive set of enterprise best practices and policies around it. When you build your initial COE platform, it must be scalable, available, secure, and sized appropriately to accommodate future demand.
There are business and IT elements of all three areas. The COE will force close collaboration between business and IT within your organization.
We’ve broken up the typical COE journey into discrete periods, each with very specific goals.
Plan (2 – 4 weeks)
- Analyze the current state and take an inventory of existing processes, tools, templates, etc.
- Define the COE vision, mission, goals and objectives based on current challenges
- Evaluate your processes, standards, tools, methodologies, templates, and solutions
- Create your COE charter and goals; create a vision statement
Establish (2 – 4 weeks)
- Establish the COE organizational structure and roles and responsibilities
- Create an engagement processes
- Define the knowledge governance approach
- Define learning and development plans
- Harvest the available knowledge and experience from past projects
- Harvest reusable solutions
- Build out your standardized processes
- Build Knowledge Management (KM) repository and tools
- Build your infrastructure and templates
Operate (52+ weeks)
- The goal is to stabilize and move from building to nurturing
- Continuously improve COE activities
- Accelerate COE learning and development and improve KM
- Improve methodologies and structures
- Initiate Solution Development activities
- Initiate competency building
- Achieve a steady state
- Evangelize the COE across the enterprise
- Optimize costs
- Undertake benchmarking
- Continue business process improvement at an accelerated pace
The key to your roadmap is to focus on the wildly important items first and then expand as you have some successes under your belt. Don’t spend too much time defining and planning; instead, spend most of your time actually doing.
The COE Accelerator leverages Pega’s COE body of knowledge and expertise across the focus areas of people, processes, and enterprise policies and standards to expedite and maximize the return on your Pega investment. Pega offers accelerator services tailored to where you are in your Pega journey. Pega Consulting offers staged packages to rapidly set up the strategy and management, core execution capabilities, and operational components tailored to your business.
Pega’s team of expert COE consultants work closely with you to establish your initial COE, leveraging Pega’s body of knowledge, and customizing the relevant tools and processes to your practice. Pega can also provide on-going staffing and execution support as you require.
- Stage 1 - COE Foundation. Guides customers through the process of defining their COEs’ vision and establishing a custom roadmap and charter. This package also includes an assessment the current state, taking inventory of existing processes and supporting artifacts. From the assessment, our experts will create a gap analysis document and will work with your team to create a go-forward plan that bridges the gap between the status quo and COE vision.
- Stage 2 - COE Development (Building on Stage 1). Defines and customizes the structure, tools, and practices around the COE vision, and establishes the COE’s management, core delivery/execution capabilities, and operational support model. This package, together with the COE Foundation, delivers the tools and guidance for you to set up and execute on the COE roadmap internally, leveraging Pega Consulting expertise.
- Stage 3 - COE Operations. Supplies Pega’s team of experts to operationalize the COE through “shoulder-to-shoulder” support, enablement, and coaching. The objective is to make the COE self-sufficient through co-delivering COE operations.