Six Pillars of Global Delivery Model in the Digital World

Author: Sonu Rathore | Categories: Digital Marketing, Digital Strategy, Consulting

Welcome to the second part of the 2-blog series on Global Delivery Model.

As you’d recall, in the previous blog I covered three pillars that included Engagement Model, Processes, and Tools. In this part, I shall cover the remaining three including People, Infrastructure, and Governance. Not only are these equally important as the ones highlighted in the first part, but they are also dynamic.

Before we begin, here’s a quick recap of the first part.

The Global Delivery Model has six pillars –

  • Engagement Model – That defines the structure and execution mode.

  • Processes – That set the course of distributed environment to ensure repeatability, quality, and timeliness.

  • Tools – That ensure that the right set of tools are used to enhance visibility for the engagement.

  • People – That implies that the right skill-sets are mapped with a competency-driven business model.

  • Infrastructure – That includes connectivity, modes, and methods of communication within global teams.

  • Governance – Finally, reviews at different levels that enable continual improvement bringing in innovation.

In the following section, I am highlighting the remaining three pillars that include: People, Infrastructure, and Governance.

The six pillars for a great global delivery model

digital marketing


In the knowledge industry, ‘people’ are considered the most valuable – so much so that this term is often recognized as the backbone of the global delivery model. Skills and competencies play an important part in ensuring delivery excellence.

Competency development is based on skill gaps, and such a framework ensures that skills are regularly upgraded. Competency-based framework is an innovative way to determine the level of skills that is required for different profiles of people. This structure helps improve productivity by ensuring that the right people are identified and absorbed for the right jobs.

These competencies can be divided into:

  1. Vertical Competencies

  2. Technical Competencies

  3. Functional Competencies

  4. Behavioral Competencies

The framework determines base-level competency requirements for each role and level, which are then assessed through tools and interviews.

Another aspect to consider is engaging people intellectually and emotionally. Innovation hubs, entrepreneurial initiatives, etc., are great employee engagement ideas.


In a global delivery framework, the fifth pillar, Infrastructure, plays a major role in many ways. As per predictions, by 2020, 80 billion USD will be spent on building data centers around the world. This will shift the focus to infrastructure (which includes connectivity, communication, and continuity), data on cloud, and security as shared via the image below by EUDCA:

digital marketing
With the advent of digital infrastructure, which has turned the world into a highly connected one, IoT, Cloud, etc., along with data, analytics and insights are now available just a click away. As the world is moving towards cloud-based infrastructure and SaaS (Software as a service), PaaS (Platform as a Service) and IaaS (Infrastructure as a service) are becoming the new norms. However, this is posing challenges on business continuity and disaster recovery.

The ability to provide 24x7 availability with high uptime, secured data, and disaster recovery has become very crucial.

digital marketing

Digital services depend on infrastructure for delivery, and without digital services, infrastructure providers have little for their infrastructure to do.

Two vulnerable aspects in this include:

  • Information Security

  • Business Continuity

To assess risks and vulnerabilities, organizations need to carry out appropriate and timely assessments. Besides, gap analysis and vulnerability assessment exercises can be helpful too in this regard. To counter threats, there needs to be a robust cloud security framework along with business continuity and disaster recovery tools. However, it is important to identify the risks to business first so that the fixes work. To recognize the threats, consider the below factors:

  • Nature of business

  • Nature of assets and their vulnerabilities

  • Review of existing controls

  • Observations and interviews of employees

  • Incidents that occurred

  • Feedback and opinion of management

Business impact analysis is done on a regular basis to identify the critical business processes/ infrastructure/ projects. The outcome helps to assess the level of risks and criticality and impact on data and projects.


Governance is the sixth pillar of the global delivery model, which has evolved over a period. The major components of Governance framework are:

  • Communication

  • Metrics and reporting

  • Compliance on regulations and models

  • Reviews
Communication: This is an important aspect in any governance model that comprises of different types and mechanisms of communication. A good communication plan can bridge gaps between distributed teams, as is shown in the table below:

Communication Type





Quarterly Business Reviews

Review the work done in previous quarter, discuss and recommend tactical and strategic areas of opportunity


In – person meeting/ Conference call

Client stakeholders, client project managers, client core team, vendors, strategy teams, vendor core team

Periodic check-in/ executive checkpoints

Check project status. Discuss any issue or concern, understand objectives and priorities.

Quarterly or on major milestones like go-live

In – person meeting/ Conference call

Client stakeholders, client project manager, vendors, engagement lead

Metrics and reporting: Visibility in service provision, productivity, utilization, and timelines are some of the most critical elements in an engagement. These can best be achieved via real-time visibility and usage of tools.

Tools like JIRA offer real-time visibility to customer, sitting miles away.

Such tools provide perceptibility and allow simultaneous tracking of projects and programs in a proactive way, thereby flagging all risks and issues before they become unmanageable. The dashboards can be configured to reflect the most important aspects, across levels, thereby enabling the senior management to take actions at the right time.

Typical metrics to track could vary, depending on the type of engagements:

  • Sprint velocity

  • Burn down chart

  • Resource utilization

  • Defect density

  • Response time

  • Resolution time

  • Uptime

The image below depicts the different metrics as mentioned above.

digital marketing

Compliance on regulations and models: Governance is significant from the compliance and regulatory standpoint. Third-party audits and security frameworks are critical. Implementation of standards such as ISO27001:2013 help achieve a majority of the regulation requirements.

Reviews: Reviews and Governance go hand in hand. Timely reviews on planning, execution, and project delivery, and managing risks can help take actions at the right time. Also, third-party audits and quality assurance reviews give an independent view on ensuring compliance towards standards and models.

To conclude, the focus on customer experience in the digital world is continually growing. Everything is becoming connected through technology, such as the Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence, and so on. Naturally, all the six elements of the Global Delivery Model: the Engagement Model, Processes, People, Tools, Infrastructure, and Governance have not only become imperative in delivering a faster and cheaper customer experience but also one that is repeatable, predictable and better.