Enterprise Agility: Implementing Agile at Scale
Date and time
Wednesday 13 November, 18:00
Our first event hosted at our own offices was a great success, with some fascinating discussions and two fantastic talks. We heard about two contrasting perspectives on how Agile can be implemented within large organisations, with a focus on the challenges and potential roadblocks that can stall or outright end these wide-scale transformation programmes.
To start the evening we heard from Frikkx, Interim Head of The Lean-Agile Centre of Practice and Improvement for Fourth, who shared a range of insights into the Agile element of some recent transformation programmes he has been involved in. His talk SAFe: Beyond Theory included insights from both company-wide and partial adoptions of the SAFe framework, applied across multiple locations, which have historically resulted in some interesting challenges to explore – SAFe to say that this was a fascinating talk!
I know it looks really complex, but the manual for [SAFe] is smaller than the manual for your car!
Fourth are the largest supplier of end-to-end hospitality solutions in the world, providing a SaaS platform that enables companies to manage their workforce, inventory and payroll, all in one place. If you’ve eaten at Pizza Express, Wagamamas, Hawskmoor, Hilton Hotels, or countless other venues, then you’ve indirectly used their services.
That scale of market success comes with some big challenges. Their platform is relied upon by their customers for business-critical processes, so must always be available; it needs to talk and integrate seamlessly with countless third-party services; and it has to stay at the forefront of technology and innovation to keep up with a fast-moving industry. It’s no exaggeration to say that when Fourth releases a new feature, it can affect the way the industry operates as a whole.
Following on from Frikkx was Giles Lindsay, a member of the Advisory Council of the Disciplined Agile Consortium. Giles gave a run down of his extensive experience implementing Agile at scale, with a focus on recent programmes he undertook at dnata and Tungsten Network. He specifically highlighted the challenges that Agile champions frequently face in the workplace and suggested how they should try to overcome them, creating an environment which allows Agile to flourish. The Challenges of "Genuine Agile" asked the audience to think about what they are doing within their organisation, and to weigh up whether their approach is "genuinely Agile", or whether it is simply "Agile theatre".
Some of the most successful organisations that have implemented an Agile way of working don't even use the standard terminology of Agile or worry about calling themselves Agile at all.
What are your Agile challenges?
Giles is currently conducting direct user research on the organisational challenges that people face when implementing Agile transformations, and Growable is helping to signal boost. If you'd like to get involved, we would love to hear your answers to our short two-minute survey. The data we gather will be used to create a white paper on the subject, which we're hoping to publish with Giles in early 2020. We hope he'll also be able to return to discuss his results at a future meetup!
You can watch videos of the main talks and stages of the evening below, as well as being able to find out more about our speakers and event organisers.
We're hard at work editing the videos from Enterprise Agility: Implementing Agile at Scale. Sorry for the delay, but we'll tweet out as soon as they are live!
Meet the Speakers
Frikkx is an Agile consultant from Iceland who has been working in the IT industry for a long, long time. He is currently working as Head of the Lean-Agile Centre of Practice and Improvement for Fourth in London, rolling out SAFe. He has previously worked with companies across Europe as a SAFe/Agile Consultant, and has a huge passion for delivering Agile processes at scale.
Giles is a software engineer with over 25 years’ industry experience. He is a Fellow with the BCS (the Chartered Institute for IT) and a Fellow with the Institute of Analysts and Programmers. He’s a long-term Enterprise Agilist and Disciplined Agile Coach, plus a member of the Advisory Council of the Disciplined Agile Consortium.
Meet the Organisers
Working with everyone within the technology community, my role at Talent Point is the end-to-end care of applicants and clients alike, from employee engagement, branding, advising, and introducing. With three years across recruitment, the bulk of which spent in this fascinating market, I am always interested in finding out more about tech and the people behind it.
I've been working closely with Fourth to drive growth across their technology divisions whilst they undergo their transition to SAFe. Having seen Frikkx's impact within the Agile space firsthand, I'm looking forward to getting a clearer insight into the key challenges that he has faced.