What is Shift Left Approach?

The shift left approach is an approach to problem-solving and customer service that encourages teams or organizations to begin addressing problems as early as possible. This means taking immediate action when an issue arises, rather than waiting for it to become a bigger problem down the line. The goal of the shift left approach is to provide customers with timely resolutions that prevent issues from escalating, ultimately resulting in better customer experiences and higher levels of customer satisfaction.

The Benefits of the Shift Left Approach

The shift left approach can be beneficial to organizations both internally and externally. Internally, it helps to increase efficiency by allowing teams to address problems quickly and efficiently before they escalate. This can help reduce the cost associated with resolving larger issues, as well as reducing the amount of time it takes to resolve those issues. Externally, this approach helps organizations provide more timely and comprehensive solutions that result in more satisfying customer experiences.

How Does It Work?

The underlying principle of shift left is simple: the earlier you can detect a problem, the easier it will be to solve. The idea is to move responsibility for problem-solving from the end of the development cycle to the beginning so that earlier detection of problems leads to sooner resolution.

This involves engaging with customers, product owners, and other stakeholders at the beginning of the development process. To ensure everyone has a shared understanding of the product requirements and that any potential issues are addressed before coding begins. This could involve conducting user research, prototyping, and testing with real users throughout the journey, which allows teams to iterate more quickly on their designs and provides valuable feedback for continual improvement.

How To Implement The Shift Left Approach

Organizations looking to implement the shift left approach should focus on developing proactive procedures and processes that enable them to identify and respond to customer issues quickly. This includes tracking customer feedback and complaints, proactively monitoring customer interactions and transactions, and training customer service representatives to handle customer inquiries and concerns. Additionally, teams need to establish clear guidelines for communication between departments and understand how information should be shared among their various teams. By doing so, teams can ensure that all issues are addressed quickly and effectively.


In conclusion, the shift left approach is an effective strategy for improving operations and reducing costs. By shifting the focus left in the problem-solving process, teams can better identify issues early on, saving time and money and ensuring projects stay on track. Organizations should leverage automated testing tools to implement this approach and create detailed requirements documents successfully.

Additionally, teams should use agile methods such as continuous integration, continuous deployment, and DevOps to reduce turnaround times and optimize workflows. Finally, documentation should be kept up-to-date to ensure everyone is on the same page and working towards the same outcome.

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