Transitioning to an Agile Workplace in 2020?
These 3 Tips Will Help.
What do companies including IBM, Cisco, AT&T, and Microsoft have in common, besides incredible success? They use Agile methods, according to Art + Marketing.1 A contributor wrote, “An Agile approach is all about being able to work more collaboratively, to release something sooner, to get feedback faster. It helps large companies to streamline their processes and respond when they see changes happening.” By streamlining their processes, companies are able to get more done in less time, boosting productivity and organizational growth.
How to Make Migrating to Agile Easier for Your Company
Is your company ready to create better products and provide an outstanding customer experience? If so, it’s time to implement Agile methods. Making the move to Agile doesn’t have to be overly complicated. Here are a few ways you can ensure a smooth transition to the use of Agile methods:
1. Train employees in Agile -- This may seem obvious, but training staff in Agile principles is critical when implementing Agile methods. Forbes quoted Madabhavi Chandrashekhar, IT professional: “Agile transformation needs training so that the participants can understand the Agile Manifesto, Agile principles, and other practices.”2
It’s vital that employees in all positions understand Agile methods. Every employee, no matter their role, must be on board with the switch to Agile before your company makes it. You can ensure that they are ready for this change by investing in training.
2. Bring an Agile business analyst on board – Those with solid business analysis experience can also be experts in Agile methodologies. They are often highly skilled at implementing company-wide change and promoting effective adoption of Agile methods. Hiring an Agile business analyst to oversee your organization’s transition to Agile can make the migration easier. Read more about what an Agile business analyst is in Why Every Agile Team Needs a Business Analyst.
One way to ensure you are relying on the right employees for the job is by looking for those with an IIBA Agile Analysis Certification (IIBA®-AAC). This globally recognized certification focuses on individuals applying an agile perspective within a business analysis framework.
3. Create a plan for overcoming obstacles to adoption -- When implementing Agile methods, it is helpful to anticipate potential obstacles to Agile adoption before you begin implementation. That way you can create a plan for overcoming those obstacles should they become an issue. To do this, you will need the help of an Agile business analyst or Agile consultant (or both). Potential hurdles to Agile adoption include, but are not limited to, lack of understanding of the motives for implementing Agile, rushed testing cycles, and limited Agile talent, per CIO.3 Again, Agile training for employees across all departments and onboarding Agile specialists, such as an Agile business analyst, can help your company sail past these potential obstacles to Agile adoption.
Many different types of companies today are using Agile methods to improve business metrics, better the customer experience, and increase the quality of their products. For example, the Harvard Business Review explained that National Public Radio uses Agile methods to create new programming, and John Deere implements Agile methods to create new machines.4 “C.H. Robinson, a global third-party logistics provider, applies them in human resources,” added a contributor.
What will your company use Agile methods for? Whatever your motive for implementing Agile, you can make the transition to this methodology easier by training employees in Agile methods, hiring someone with Agile business analysis experience, and planning for potential obstacles to Agile adoption.
- Art + marketing. This is why Fortune 500 companies use an Agile approach to process improvement. https://artplusmarketing.com/this-is-why-fortune-500-companies-use-an-agile-approach-to-process-improvement-d4095d410a61.
- Forbes. Forbes insights: 4 ways to ease the transition from waterfall to agile. https://www.forbes.com/sites/insights-scrumalliance/2018/11/01/4-ways-to-ease-the-transition-from-waterfall-to-agile/#59a8ca0ca6fd.
- CIO. Agile project management: 12 key principles, 4 big hurdles. https://www.cio.com/article/3156998/agile-project-management-a-beginners-guide.html.
- Harvard Business Review. Embracing agile. https://hbr.org/2016/05/embracing-agile.