With any digital product or service, the work is not complete once pushed to live. In many ways, that’s when the bulk of the work begins.

Project thinking of defined beginnings and endings is not helpful in this context. So we’ve created a continuous lifecycle, with 3 phases in each cycle, as a sustainable mechanism for creating and running live products and services, measuring their performance and applying the insights to planning the next cycle.

There are ‘thresholds’ at the end of each phase - assessments of whether to proceed to the next phase.

Graphic showing the 3 phases of Shelter's digital cycle

The 3 phases

Creating a live service - Planning, discovery, delivery, scaling and deployment

Operating a live service - Measuring and monitoring, maintaining a service, and making iterations or pivots

Future vision and business planning - Capturing ideas, validating opportunities, planning and prioritising

Assessment thresholds

Between each phase, decisions need to be made. At the end of each phase, we make sure we’ve reached a threshold of evidence to move forward to the next phase.

Does the newly built service meet all acceptance criteria and quality checks? Does the live service still deliver value to user and the business? Have the planned new products and services been fully assessed for audience and business needs, risks, technology and process requirements, and more?

We are trying out different ways to assess products and services at the end of each phase. We want to be inclusive of teams when we conduct threshold assessment, and be flexible in the criteria we use.

Next: Creating a live service