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Lean PD Best Practices: Telefónica



Telefónica is one of the world’s leading telecommunication service provider; it operates in 21 countries, primarily in Europe and Latin America. In 2014, the company incomes were €50 billion, served 360 million customers and employed 120,000 people worldwide.

Since 2006, Telefónica I+D (Telefónica Research and Development) has introduced agile methodologies for product development, especially in software development. However, in 2011 Telefónica began to position itself as a digital telecommunications company and started to build digital products. Since then, Telefónica has followed the Lean Startup methodology and has significantly improved areas like time saving, quality, cost reduction and learning culture enhancement. All these changes have led to a significant cultural transformation within the company.

Bearing this in mind, Telefónica has launched new innovation projects and has set guidelines for emerging projects from its new innovation strategy. Additionally, Telefónica has actively involved its Branding Department and the Sales Force in the development and validation of new hypotheses with potential clients.

Telefónica has accelerated its innovation cycles 2.6 times, thus reducing the time spent on each project and therefore decreasing by 48% on average the budget invested in each project. At the same time, even with a lower overall budget in the same time frame the company launched more projects than before, increasing the number of innovation projects by 45% and focusing on the customer. Thus, Telefónica has more opportunities to test a greater number of ideas and consequently augment the possibilities of having a greater impact on its business by creating products that customers need.

As a result of the transformation of its innovation process with the adoption of Lean Startup, Telefónica is on the verge of launching new digital solutions. It is already carrying out commercial trials for some of the first projects developed with this methodology.




Lean Analytics Association

Lean Analytics Association (LAA) is a non-profit organization that helps companies to transform by enabling lean thinking in their innovation processes. LAA was founded in Switzerland in 2012 as a spin- off from Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL). Our mission is to facilitate the transformation of companies by applying lean thinking and innovation best practices in the product development process. To accomplish our mission, we focus on enabling professionals to learn, innovate, and share to enable them to remove waste and accelerate the innovation outcomes providing training, organizing networking events and continuously research the latest trends.

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