You often hear about organizations, big and small, going through an Agile transformation, but what exactly does that mean? A true transformation can only occur when Agile and its main values have been considered. It's also important to think about how you can change not just a particular department or subset of employees within the organization, but change the entire company.
The Concept of Agile
To go through an Agile transformation you need to understand what the concepts of Agile development are all about. If you look up the term itself, it is more or less defined as being able to move quickly. Agile is all about producing quality, working software quickly. The software production occurs in short and speedy increments known as Sprints in the Scrum world.
Agile is a set of principles and values that emphasizes individuals over processes. It also emphasizes personal interactions, working software, and customer collaboration. What it does not value is extensive documentation, over-processing, or adherence to a strict plan. Agile forces all Development Teams, as well as individual members of an organization, to be comfortable with the uncomfortable. They learn to adapt to the rapidly changing requirements that pop up along the way. Driving home the values of Agile allows for a true enterprise transformation to take place.
To go through an Agile transformation as an enterprise, you need to be able to adapt quickly. A big part of this involves transforming the company culture and mindset, eventually becoming Agile in day-to-day operations. Going beyond software development, this Agile mindset can, and will, infiltrate the project management space as well.
It is not just a Development Team that needs to undergo an Agile transformation. The transformation needs to happen in waves and at all levels. Understanding Scrum and other mechanisms to adapt to the methodology can be extremely beneficial. Executives and stakeholders should also participate in the enterprise Agile transformation process.
Most organizations understand that there are many benefits to Agile, but the tricky part is realizing those benefits. There is a big difference between saying you are Agile and actually doing Agile.
Complete Agile Adoption
Once you begin to transform the enterprise, you can then truly adopt Agile. Agile adoption is when you are practicing Agile principles on a day-to-day basis. The transformation is not going to be a success right out of the gate. You need to figure out what works and what doesn’t, put Product Owners and Scrum Masters in positions to succeed, and let teams learn to self-organize in ways that will prove successful.
An enterprise Agile transformation is difficult. It will require a complete shift in mindset at all levels of the organization. It will also require extensive training on the concepts of Agile, as well as knowledge of Scrum, Kanban, and other methodologies. The roles must be taught and implemented across the organization, including Scrum Masters, Product Owners and more. Only then can your organization consider itself truly Agile.
At ClearlyAgile we help you apply strategies to transform your enterprise into a world-class, Agile-based organization. Some of our services include
DevOps Assessments and Implementations
Agile Custom Software Development
Please contact us for more information about our services!