Leanness for agility with jidoka and code monkey


Improving ‘FLOW’ (using jidoka) towards a smooth automated build & deployment system is an extremely challenging journey for large corporations
One of the root causes is the presence of huge legacy systems.





History has proven that the first baby step is to consider defining a recurring frequency for build & test. The next iterations are to continuously measure and improve upon the first step.

It is both painful and time-consuming in the start and carries numerous long term benefits.

‘Jidoka’ comes from lean manufacturing and maps into automated software builds for our industry
It means that an automated process is sufficiently "aware" of itself so that it will:



In ManufacturingIn Software

  • Detect process malfunctions or product defects

  • Detect failing automated tests (regression & unit)

  • Stop itself

  • Stop the build

  • Alert the operator

  • Escalate the build failure accordingly

Create a role “build monkey” who shares the build information as part of the daily scrum routine. Discussing the potential jidoka in the daily scrums is an effective and logical first step.


In addition to "What I completed yesterday", "What I intend to complete today" & "Any blockers" - the build monkey answers one extra question - "Build failures?".

Highlighting this root-cause of lower quality and missed deadlines, can go a long way.

The ultimate result is improvement in productivity and a solid foundation for continuous innovation.

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Thank you very much for the insights and suggestions.

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