Here are adesso’s tips for a successful “agile transformation”:
1. Embrace the changes at the top: Becoming agile means changing your culture. To achieve that successfully, management has to set an example. Because it results in new roles, managers have to give up their traditional posi-tion and delegate responsibility to employees, who get more authority to make decisions
2. Look for coaching partners and choose the right method: Companies are advised to engage an external partner to coach them through the transition to agile methods – so that they don’t fall victim to their own corporate myopia. The agile development methods chosen also have to be appropriate to the es-tablished, complex structures of the automobile sector. Agile concepts like scrum, LeSS, Kanban and SAFe have to be adapted to the respective compa-ny environment.
3. Let development work run its course Management’s position as role models also means that managers should no longer make short-term interven-tions in development work. Once a sprint begins, they should not approach developers with new requirements and demand that they implement them im-mediately. Otherwise plans cannot be executed properly. However, at its core, agility also means that new ideas are constantly tested in practice and flexibly assessed with regard to their validity. The things that don’t work are rejected.
4. Establish a new meeting culture Agile software development requires new coordination meetings. Past meetings, which were often purely for report-ing, should be cancelled where possible. For improved transparency, all the teams involved should use a shared calendar, which shows their development times.
5. Focus clearly on benefits Agility means full concentration on the business value of a piece of software, meaning its benefits to the user. Those benefits can best be assessed by the specialist departments. That’s why the product owner for a piece of software should come from the specialist department, and not from IT.
6. Integrate IT and specialist departments Ideally the product owner should be supported by a proxy, a kind of representative, from the IT department. That's because it is the only department that knows about IT dependencies. Then both individuals can drive the development of the product together, tak-ing both the specialist and IT perspectives appropriately into account.