Continuing the journey
The Enhance section of support focuses on empowering the customer by giving them the ability to quickly iterate on improvements without the need for long development cycles. Typically, these opportunities will arise from either direct customer requests or via opportunities identified through Product Success.
The key differentiator for the Enhance process versus regular support is allowing developers time to focus on the why of an improvement and work alongside a designer if applicable. Too often improvements made when siloed within a traditional technical support team, don’t consider the user or the existing design system. Enhance provides the ability to collaboratively consider an improvement with all relevant disciplines, allowing more meaningful and considered improvements to be designed and delivered.
Before any development begins, an elaboration should occur for the request. Elaboration can be considered a smaller version of scoping that is instead focused on a small set of features, or just one well-defined problem statement. The core goal of elaboration is to build a backlog of work that meets a definition of ready. With that backlog, an estimation should be possible, which will communicate the effort required to complete the improvement for the client.
The development should begin with one or more issues that meet the definition of ready. It’s typical to use a Kanban flow with this type of short-term work to encourage starting development as soon as a ticket is ready. This means elaboration for other items can continue with another party in the meantime. Work moving through development within this process should come with similar quality assurance processes such as peer review, release checklists and customer based UAT for confirmation.
Moving between Maintain and Enhance
The Maintain stage is consistently active, while the Enhance phase should be engaged only as required for improvements. The key to making these two processes work well together is having a clear process of enabling Enhance to quickly start and stop as required. This can be done by ensuring that any improvements made and released to production are handled like any other handover from a Delivery Team. Ensure the release was performed using standard QA processes, the documentation is updated, and the customer was able to test and approve the efforts before releasing to production. Focusing on this will assist developers supporting new improvements once users begin to use the new features.