IT in the time of COVID-19 - the tale of three fictitious grocery stores

COVID-19 transformed the online grocery business overnight. At the three leading grocery stores, online orders jumped to levels not anticipated for another five years. Systems - software and human - were overwhelmed and customers became frustrated. The business leaders at all three companies realized that a quick interim fix would be to enable customers to schedule a pickup.

Nimble Stores, Inc recognized IT was strategically important to the business. They had fully embraced the success triangle.

Their IT organization was a network of loosely coupled DevOps/Kanban teams building a microservices-based application. Consequently, they were able to very quickly wrap-up the current tasks, and develop and rollout scheduled pickup in just a few weeks.

In comparison, Sluggish Stores, Inc was much slower. On the one hand, they also considered IT to be strategically important. They had embraced agile. However, Sluggish Stores still had a monolithic architecture that slowed down delivery. What’s more, they used the SaFE framework. Their teams were locked into a recently started 10 week program increment. As a result, Sluggish Stores couldn’t quickly implement scheduled pickup, and ultimately ended up losing market share to Nimble Stores.

The situation was even worse at Glacial Stores. They treated IT purely as a cost center, and had outsourced their software development to low cost, offshore companies. They spent many weeks fully specifying the requirements and negotiating the contracts with each vendor. Their in-house developers were exhausted by the endless early morning and late night conference calls. Not surprisingly, Glacial Stores’s sales dropped significantly.



Copyright © 2024 Chris Richardson • All rights reserved • Supported by Kong.

About Microservices.io

Microservices.io is brought to you by Chris Richardson. Experienced software architect, author of POJOs in Action, the creator of the original CloudFoundry.com, and the author of Microservices patterns.

New workshop: Architecting for fast, sustainable flow

Enabling DevOps and Team Topologies thru architecture

DevOps and Team topologies are vital for delivering the fast flow of changes that modern businesses need.

But they are insufficient. You also need an application architecture that supports fast, sustainable flow.

Learn more and register for my June 2024 online workshops....

NEED HELP?

I help organizations improve agility and competitiveness through better software architecture.

Learn more about my consulting engagements, and training workshops.

LEARN about microservices

Chris offers numerous other resources for learning the microservice architecture.

Get the book: Microservices Patterns

Read Chris Richardson's book:

Example microservices applications

Want to see an example? Check out Chris Richardson's example applications. See code

Virtual bootcamp: Distributed data patterns in a microservice architecture

My virtual bootcamp, distributed data patterns in a microservice architecture, is now open for enrollment!

It covers the key distributed data management patterns including Saga, API Composition, and CQRS.

It consists of video lectures, code labs, and a weekly ask-me-anything video conference repeated in multiple timezones.

The regular price is $395/person but use coupon ILFJODYS to sign up for $95 (valid until April 12, 2024). There are deeper discounts for buying multiple seats.

Learn more

Learn how to create a service template and microservice chassis

Take a look at my Manning LiveProject that teaches you how to develop a service template and microservice chassis.

Signup for the newsletter


BUILD microservices

Ready to start using the microservice architecture?

Consulting services

Engage Chris to create a microservices adoption roadmap and help you define your microservice architecture,


The Eventuate platform

Use the Eventuate.io platform to tackle distributed data management challenges in your microservices architecture.

Eventuate is Chris's latest startup. It makes it easy to use the Saga pattern to manage transactions and the CQRS pattern to implement queries.


Join the microservices google group