Implementing an Agile Approach
Implementing Agile is a serious endeavor. The first question you should ask yourself is WHY – Why Agile? What am I looking to improve through implementing Agile? Make sure have good reasons that go beyond the superficial “Because everybody’s doing it”.
You should plan for a serious initiative that will require your attention, ongoing management and inspiring leadership. Just because Agile talks about self-organized teams doesn’t mean it can be implemented by remote-control. Get ready to pull up your sleeves and do some hard work!
We’ve helped companies such as HP, Intel, AT&T, Cisco, Informatica, Siemens, Amdocs, CyberArk. We would love to help you too.
Is an Agile Implementation Right For You?
All too often, companies implement Agile simply because it’s popular. Unfortunately, when this is done in a superficial way – without regard to context and your specific needs and objectives – the results are poor.
You Need Speed So You Can Learn Quickly
Your product development process is too slow, resulting in late times to market. Lack of speed can hurt competitive advantage, reduce market share and lower sales.
You Need More Flexibility
Your ability to maneuver and change direction of the project or product is limited. As a result, not only your process suffers but you’re struggling to apply any learning to your business.
Your Organization is Siloed
Your teams are function-oriented. Delivering value requires them to work across many teams, dependencies and bureaucracy, making it difficult to move fast and effectively. People feel micromanaged and dis-empowered.
You Lack Visibility & Transparency
Because your process lacks visibility, you’re unable to tell both your sales team and your customers when things will be ready. As a result, you cannot make the necessary business predictions.
Keys to a Successful Agile Implementation
Implement Agile using Agile
Implementing Agile “By The Book” rarely works. The same Inspect & Adapt mindset we use to deal with the requirement/technology uncertainty in software/system development should be applied to the transformation/change management process. We use practices such as Scrum, Kanban, Lean Startup, Open Space to drive the agile change process in an agile way. A side benefit is acceleration of the understanding of a Lean/Agile mindset at the organizational level.
Servant Leadership – Show the way, Support the journey
Today’s environment demands agility. You must be able to balance commitment and predictability with a flexible process that adapts to market needs. We’ll show you how to put the “agility” back into your Agile.
Be willing to deal with the obstacles that agile surfaces
Implementing Agile surfaces a lot of problems. It always seems like Agile is actually making things worse. The key is to prioritize those obstacles/problems and tackle them while making sure everybody understands the reason for the pain, the fact it is being dealt with, and reminding the vision we’re going through this tough change for.
A consistent process is the key to success. We follow a proven blueprint to set goals and plan, implement, scale and improve your Agile deployment. Each implementation we do is customized to the needs, structure and goals of your organization. We call our approach The AgileSparks Way.
Testimonials from our agile implementations:
"Yael is one of those people who manage to be at the same time part of the team and a consultant to the team. She constructed the change process in a way that allowed practices to stick by helping people to adopt them as their own."
"Yael's ability to quickly understand the organization, the product and our specific needs was a key factor in helping us become agile and to better react to the needs/requirements of Clarizen's SaaS customers."
"By having Yuval on board, we found not just an experienced professional but also a partner in our lean journey with a passion and commitment to coach and guide us until we achieve our goals. Yuval’s vast knowledge and experience along with keen analytical skills enable him to fit the lean principles into our organization’s DNA and to help us overcome difficulties and constraints without risking our short-term business targets. Yuval has many capabilities which make him highly versatile. He can swiftly move from strategy/blueprints to training a class, implementing methods/processes all the way to one on-one-coaching for tough cases. This makes Yuval very valuable and very influential in our journey towards lean."
"With the help of AgileSparks (Yuval Yeret), we implemented a Kanban system at NICE that enabled us to achieve significant improvement in efficiency, winning together, work atmosphere, quality, and client focus. Yuval and everyone at AgileSparks are professionals of the highest standard, and I strongly recommend anybody considering Agile/Lean to work with them."
"When we started working with Yuval from AgileSparks we didn't know what Agile, Scrum or Kanban was. Yuval helped us with educating management to get the support needed to initiate a new project using Agile methodology. We had several sessions to help us learn the methodology and then choose how to adapt it to our world. The training included R&D, QA, PM, management and relevant interfaces. The terrific thing about these sessions was the real-life practice we did on our own project using the methodology we chose. It gave us the kickstart for the Agile implementation and buy-in of all the parties. Later, Yuval trained us in the first few sprints. We have continued to improve and are spreading Agile to other teams and projects within NICE."
"When we decided to scale Agile to other disciplines beyond software as well as to more complex projects, it was clear that for us to succeed we would need guidance and training from experts that have deep and practical know-how. After meeting several consultants, we chose AgileSparks. Drawing on its vast experience with software development and with Agile implementations, its coaches were able to help us define the development process that was right for us, injected motivation where necessary, directed and challenged the teams, and helped us present the process to management. One of the most critical aspects of AgileSparks' work was its ability to bring us to maturity, allowing us to continue employing Agile in our development process independently. Today, we are running several projects by ourselves and consult AgileSparks occasionally."
"There's much more to Agile implementation than what the textbooks say. Yael has done wonderful and thoughtful work with Leverate, helping us to adopt Agile principles but also reminding us to take a different, pragmatic approach when it serves the grand plan. She quickly became part of the R&D family, helping us solve tough problems and making us more aware of both the good and the bad, always with a positive attitude. Leverate's R&D department more than doubled itself in the last year, and the challenges were countless, but our Agile approach worked like magic. We learned how to insist on sky-high quality and grew a dream team of Agile people who love what they do."
"As a large R&D organization, with multiple groups and dependencies, one of our main challenges is predictability. With the move to Scrum and the enforcement of one prioritized backlog, we have improved our predictability substantially. We are still in the journey, but the team has bought into it and most importantly, we keep improving as we go. Yuval guided the team and the management during the training and the adoption, helping us to build it right, which made the whole experience very positive!"
- R&D Department Manager, ECI Telecom
"Our organization (about 100 people) moved to Agile in late 2010. Yael from AgileSparks joined our implementation team as an Agile consultant a few months after we started the implementation. Yael quickly got to know our employees and key players, as well as our unique business environment. Yael successfully delivered theoretical sessions to different groups: Scrum Masters, Developers and Testers, and followed them up by guiding the different Scrum Teams in their day-to-day challenges. She also met the unit's management on a weekly basis to monitor the entire implementation process and conduct learning and fine-tuning on the run. Thanks to her deep professionalism in Agile and her great personality, Yael was accepted by all parties and helped us push forward the complex assimilation of Agile in our organization significantly while handling resistances and instilling the right mindset. After completing the initial phase of implementing the basic Agile practices, we will continue to work with Yael to get to the next level of agility and to ensure that a continuous improvement mindset becomes part of our DNA. I would recommend any organization that is in the process of moving to Agile work with Yael."
"Elad from AgileSparks had a pivotal role in the Galor R&D team's successful Scrum adoption. He led the process starting with the objectives definition through the tedious cross-company negotiations and implementation, ending with a constructive follow-up. Elad is a mentor by nature. He encourages you to find the right solution rather than forcing his own opinions on your needs. Elad also demonstrates a wide scope of knowledge with software engineering processes, practices and history, which contributes to placing the adoption process in the right context. I strongly recommend Elad as mentor and coach for Scrum adoption."