Customers and their network needs are at the heart of everything we do at GlobalNOC. Whether it’s fulfilling feature requests, improving existing functionality, fixing bugs, or building new tools and services, we strive to be on it, at all times.
Unfortunately, we are only human and are limited in what we can do and how quickly we can do it.
“We want customers to feel like there's no limit on the number of requests they can send us. However, a side effect of this stance is that there are always more things on our collective to-do list than we can ever complete,” said David Ripley, director, software and systems engineering. “It's a good problem to have—we're never short of awesome ideas—but sometimes it's challenging to decide what we're going to work on next.”
That’s where our new focus on fair and transparent prioritization comes in.
“Because it’s not always clear to our customers how we decide what to work on next, we want to be more deliberate and more visible in how we prioritize our work,” Ripley said. “We believe doing so gives customers increased confidence that we're making good decisions on their behalf, and lets them participate more directly in that decision-making process.”
Here’s what we mean by “fair and transparent”:
Fair: We will align and assign priorities in the interests of our customers—individually and collectively—as well as with GlobalNOC's internal priorities, strategic goals, etc. We want each individual customer to get the most value they can from our services, while also maximizing the value we provide to our customers collectively.
Transparent: We want people to see and understand the prioritization process, and what factors we take into account when making those decisions. We want to be outwardly transparent—giving our customers visibility into what requests exist, how they're currently prioritized, the amount of effort that we're expending to fulfill those requests. We also want to be inwardly transparent—we want to see what requests are important to specific customers, what their priorities are, and how those priorities align with those of other customers.
The GlobalNOC leadership team has been discussing this new goal of fair and transparent prioritization for a few months, and we’re making progress:
- We created the "top 10" prioritization project, where we've worked with customers to identify the issues that are most important to them, so we can focus our efforts in the short to medium term.
- We’re developing a ticketing portal to give customers more direct visibility into the systems and software tickets that they've opened with us.
“In the end, we're a service provider. Anything we do has to benefit our customers,” Ripley said. “We definitely hope to see internal benefits on this new focus on prioritization—more effective use of our time, and so on—but that just means more time to focus on our customers and doing the right thing for them.”