Organizations need to evolve to succeed in the competitive market today. Rapid delivery of products to end-users is the name of the game, always bringing value in short and rapid increments. Organizations also need to become more versatile. Ditching the traditional, top-down Waterfall approach is a good first step.
Companies embark on their Agile transformations every day, but how do they do it and what are the common agile transformation steps? Let's dig a bit deeper into the Agile transformation process.
1. Change the Business Structure and Define the Vision
You need to alter the structure of your business to support the Agile transformation. Project Manager and Business Analyst roles will be completely transformed. The two most important positions in an Agile organization are the Product Owner and Scrum Master. By defining these roles first, you can then begin to figure out what your vision really is.
While it will not be set in stone, consider what you want your organizational structure to look like and which metrics matter to you. Once you know the starting point, what are the next Agile transformation steps?
2. Build a Roadmap and Plan Quarterly
You cannot transform your entire organization in one shot. The next step is to build a roadmap so you can begin to transition pockets of the organization one step at a time. For instance, you might transition management first, followed by one Development Team, followed by a second Development team. As you do this, give each Scrum team one quarter to settle into the new Agile structure before rolling the next round of training and Sprints.
With a roadmap in place, you will get a sense of how long the transformation should take. Begin to plan quarterly so you have shorter milestones you can hit with each team’s shift to Agile.
3. Check, Adapt, and Learn
Routinely check in on all of the Development Teams after they complete their Agile transformation. Whatever went well in the first wave of transformations is something to mimic going forward. If certain parts of the transformation did not go well, you will need to change your approach. As you learn from mistakes, you will be able to make tweaks along the way to make easier transformations in the future and, ultimately, deliver better products.
4. Keep Business Objectives in Mind
Agile is all about the delivery of business objectives. From a Development Team perspective, think about the business and the customer at all times. A good way to tie everything together is by creating, and constantly reviewing vision statements. A vision statement can help Development Teams track progress, achieve business objectives and deliver value to customers.
Agile transformation steps should be taken one step at a time. Patience is key throughout the process. It will take longer than a week’s worth of training before the full transformation is complete. When it is all said and done, your Agile organization will be better built for the future and the competitive landscape ahead.