Will Everitt, Pacific Magazines

Hilary Ip
19 May 2018

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Will Everitt, Pacific Magazines

  1. “ Every business will become a software business ” The CEO of Microsoft
  2. How a Publisher Became a Technology Company The Epic Journey
  3. Leading technology transformation and product development. Mobilising innovation for blue chips and start-ups Extensive global experience including Hong Kong and London Build product and technology teams, adopt Agile & Lean enterprise wide and establish innovative high scale platforms. Everitt | Head of Product and Technology at Pacific MagazinesWill
  4. Who is Pacific Magazines?
  5. How did they lose their tech mojo ? The Lost Decade Focused mainly on print with no digital DNA.
  6. So what did we do ?
  7. We focused on four areas ProcessProduct People Technology
  8. Product Process People Technology
  9. Product We defined a product strategy and started experimenting
  10. Product “ Visionwithout action is a daydream. Action without vision is a nightmare” Japanese Proverb
  11. Product Focus on the things that really matter
  12. Product STOP low value work, work not aligned to strategy, ineffectual work
  13. Product START experimenting. we need to try things and see what works well
  14. Product CONTINUE once we find something that is proven effective we should do more of it and ensure that there is a process to share
  15. Product We defined a product strategy
  16. Product
  17. Product • Consumer trends are heavily increasing on mobile, people are time-poor and want to consume content on the go. A mobile first strategy is key to success with focus on unique value propositions. • Premium, trusted and brand safe environment with best-in-class digital experiences to increase engagement. With increased traffic from search and social, there is a need to make Article the new homepage.
  18. Product • Video is a key enabler to capitalise on today's market trends. User’s expectations of content and the richness of the experience it provides have grown exponentially. • The video advertising spend growth rate is at, and continues to grow at, a double digit figures. The dollars are there - so we needed to provide inventory to capitalise on this demand.
  19. Product • Placing the audience at the heart of everything we do. Maximise the value of our audience to improve monetisation. Developing concepts targeted at audience growth among high value consumers. • Data is the key asset. Finding it, analysing it, consolidating it and monetising it is paramount. Get data in one place and create services to dynamically expose information.
  20. Product People Technology Process
  21. We introduced a framework to define clear agile product roadmap Process
  22. “ If I had 9 hours to chop down a tree, I’d spend the first 6 sharpening my axe” Abraham Lincoln Process
  23. Process Product CouncilProduct Lifecycle Product InnovationProduct Roadmaps
  24. Process • Focuses on deliver often and early • Defines how to we prioritise, start, engage, deliver and measure • Lite stage-gate framework with iterative approach based on Scrum and Lean Startup principles • Full transparency with clear delivery ownership Product Lifecycle
  25. Process Product Roadmaps • Clear and prioritised product roadmap aligned to strategy • Quarter based planning and priorities with high level FY roadmap • Provides transparency on future plans and what is being worked on / delivered • Defined process for roadmap and funding approval
  26. Process Product Council • Forum of uber product owners and stakeholders to: – Review product strategy and roadmap – What are we currently working on? What is ahead of us? – Presentation of any conflicting priorities – Final decision of prioritisation • Enables a joined up approach to decision making
  27. Process Product Innovation • Innovation framework focused on – new ideas and taking risks – new products through to market launch – quickly / iteratively • Innovation activities - ‘hackathons’, lightning talks, department ideation, collaborative meetups and innovation partnerships • User driven innovation - experimentation sessions, consumer feedback, research & prototype testing
  28. Process Transparency, openness and shared understanding of team goals. Review everything and continuously look for improvement. Welcome change and be prepared to course correct at any time if it means we are building a better product. Open Inspect Adapt
  29. Process Product Lifecycle - Micro team - Just enough to understand PoC - Workshops - Risk based approach - A set of hypotheses - Small team - Build out Beta backlog - Workshops, paper prototypes, and code - Build business case - Minimum set of features - Deliver Beta / MVP - Working software - Validate business case - Enhance Beta / MVP - Production strength software - Measure key KPI’s - Business case Inception Proof of Concept Beta ScaleConcept - Create the vision - Project brief completed - Waiting for prioritisation
  30. Process TechnologyProduct People
  31. People We brought in new talent, re-booted the organisation and established a supportive culture.
  32. People “ To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often ” Winston Churchill
  33. People Atomic Delivery Squad Extrapolate to create product & tech functions Goals • Clear ownership of delivery • Articulate stories / requirements • Effective tracking with transparency • Upfront solution architecture • Platform stability • Strong visual design
  34. People Atomic Delivery Squad Engineer UX & Design Tech Lead Product Owner Iteration Manager / BA
  35. People ● Owns product lifecycle from inception to market launch ● Sizing, planning and tracking ● Story definition ● Delivery to expectation Delivery Iteration Manager / BAIteration Manager / BA ● Optimised engineering process ● Accurate sizing and standard process ● Knowledge sharing, cross team collaboration and technical innovation ● Adoption of test automation ● Solution architecture Engineering Engineer Tech Lead Product ● Develop product roadmap and quarterly plans ● Engage with stakeholder groups to gain requirements ● Gatekeeper for all product requirements and prioritises based on ROI ● Delivery of best practice UX and visual design ● Data driven decision making Product Owner UX Designer
  36. People Enable Empower the team and give people space and autonomy to do it on their own Reward Celebrate success and recognise and reward achievements
  37. People Talent Onboard and develop smart and passionate ‘doers’ who are highly skilled and good culture fit Test & Learn Foster test and learn, support ‘failing is learning’ and encourage decision making
  38. People Grow Mentor and coach teams. Set goals and discuss regularly. Align Define and align roles and responsibilities to strategy
  39. ProcessProduct People Technology
  40. We introduced the right operational infrastructure to support rapid development. Technology
  41. Technology “ Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.” Albert Einstein
  42. Technology Flexibility Agility RealFast • Utilise real life user data to drive product development. • Analytics requirements must be designed into every system component. • Ensure digital content on platforms where possible is channel agnostic. Understand where content needs to be delivery technology specific. • Greater ability to adapt to changing landscape • Offer fast and frequent delivery - the ability to deliver features fast • Automate everything and enable continuous delivery • Embrace cloud based infrastructure and open-source technologies to optimise costs. • Introduce robust cost and security review processes as part of our devops practices. • Commitment to delivery • Reduction of waste and maintainable and high performance software • Adopt an iterative approach. • Speed to market and early discover is paramount. • Innovate and take risks - don’t be afraid of failure. • APIs will support rapid product innovation. • Future proof to provide a solid, reusable foundation for cost effective delivery of new and emerging audience facing services • Enable with open APIs so easy to enter new delivery channels. Build secure, scalable, and standards based RESTful APIs • Leverage a shared set of core capabilities and data. • Design loosely coupled technology components that could be replaced in the future to minimise vendor lock in. • Reduction of waste and maintainable and high performance software Simplicity • Focus on simplicity - simple systems to build, use, maintain and integrate. • Stable, reusable platforms • Highly responsive and engaging user experiences across mobile and desktop platforms leveraging modern frameworks and native mobile SDKs. • Common Platforms for all capabilities - deliver core and standard platforms, then innovate on them. Technology Strategy & Goals
  43. Technology Continuous Delivery Automated integration and deployment Cloud Enabled Automated Infrastructure Creation in AWS Reuse Strive for re-use across teams Test Automation Automated tests - unit and e2e - triggered from build server.
  44. So what were the results ?
  45. we released a strong digital product range with highly engaging user experience We had clear roadmaps which everyone signed up to with regular innovations days We created a high performing team that drove agile adoption We established a scalable and high quality platform with speed to market Product Technology People Process
  46. So in conclusion
  47. All companies need to find their inner technology mojo This is to ensure you survive the fast changing future
  48. by focusing on you are able to become High performing Tech savvy Roll like silicon valley start-up Product Process People Technology