search for the Grail or necessary post-Covid transformation?

Business agility or business agility: a fundamental trend or a buzzword? What is agility and how to implement it in companies? Egor Sviridenko, Apptio, explains…

For several years, business agility has been on the agenda and focused on a simple objective: to remain competitive, adapting quickly to changes and new market opportunities. However, by 2021, only one in five organizations had implemented an enterprise agile framework*. Among the obstacles to a faster implementation of agile strategies are isolated teams, poor visibility or even inefficient planning and disconnected tools… What are the main steps to overcome these obstacles and adopt some agility? What are the big trends for 2022 in this regard? This is Egor Sviridenko, Director of Agile Portfolio / Apptio EMEA at Apptio.

Agility as a professional life philosophy in 2022

“First of all, I think it’s important to point out that there are different ways of defining agility within a company”, explains Egor Sviridenko. You can look at it as a business strategy, but you can also look at agility as a philosophy of movement, as a true corporate culture.” Before this notion of agility, the culture of many companies was based on different methods of managing work – the “V cycle” and other more traditional methods. These methods are based on the assumption of linear predictability and do not seem to recognize the complex system that is an organization’s work environment. configurations can be imposed,” continues Egor, Apptio’s Agile Portfolio Director. And this observation became obvious after the health crisis because, in this context, many organizations had to question themselves. ” In fact, COVID-19 quickly pushed and blurred the boundaries between professional and personal life. “At Apptio, since the crisis, we realized that companies really want to get out of the traditional scheme. We have more demand for tools related to this agility, mainly from banks”.

The big problem that these companies want to solve through a more agile method? The volatile nature of change, the complexity of the environment in which most companies operate today. In fact, the agile method makes it possible to understand this complexity with tools such as transparency and incremental and more frequent course reviews based on the results obtained. “For the most part, employees are well aware of this. The notion of agility is very popular in teams, but even less so with managers and leaders who are often wedded to the old ways. The main obstacle is a simplistic treatment of agility as simply “another method to become more efficient”, while leaders must recognize agility as a profound shift in perspective”. Today, for a company to benefit from all the advantages of an agile way of operation, this change must come from the Management, from the Executive Committees. In the long run, by making agility a business strategy, but also a philosophy of life within the office, companies create a more sustainable economic life.

7 important steps to adopting agility within a company

One of the main challenges that French companies face is being able to reorient themselves towards optimized results, often at a faster pace than traditional budgeting and forecasting processes can sustain. By following these few steps, any organization can face this challenge and adopt a solid agile system.

  1. Define what agility means for the business: What can agility as a whole look like, beyond just implementing an agile framework? Are employees already aware of and trained in an agile methodology?
  2. Communicate goals to your employees: As in any organization, communication remains one of the fundamental keys to transformation. That’s why it’s important to ensure that the new goals are shared with all employees, regardless of job title and hierarchical position.
  3. Identify the best tool to track and measure enterprise agile planning (EAP): One of the biggest reasons why enterprise agile frameworks fail is the disconnect from the tools. By having a single EAP tool that makes it easy to analyze and move resources and communicate the cost implications of these changes, organizations can innovate faster and are more likely to collaborate.
  4. Calculate and optimize everyone’s workload: EAP tools ensure the accuracy of this planning to better manage workload at a team and individual level.
  5. Prioritize and Prepare: The idea of ​​this fifth step is to rank each initiative and work according to its business value and this is just to ensure that the IT foundations and resources are in place to achieve the desired results.
  6. Track Progress: Once the transition is underway, it’s important to carefully monitor progress to remove obstacles and empower team members to achieve established goals.
  7. Continue to optimize agile enterprise planning: To sustain this approach, all companies must take the time to look at what can be simplified to optimize time and resources for the future.

* https://circle.gartner.com/Portals/2/Resources/pdf/Agile%20in%20the%20Enterprise%202019%20-%20Results%20Summary%20(updated).pdf

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