Agile Consulting; Delivering true value

Agile has not only become the standard within IT, more and more Agile practices can be found outside IT.

Within a few years, everything will connect to everything via the Internet. The so-called 'Internet of Things' will propel the era of the 'Customer'. Fast translation of direct end customer feedback into usable and valuable functionalities is the key for survival of all businesses. Consequently business strategies will mainly focus around the topic: ‘Business Innovation Acceleration’. This new focus in strategy only reaches its full potential when the new Agile (business and IT) teams deliver a continuous flow of functionalities to production (technically made possible by continuous deployment principles). Along side the complete management culture needs to drastically change towards ‘servant leadership’. The past years the Xebia Agile Consulting unit has successfully implemented these preconditions within multiple organizations to support their newly formed business strategies.

The current gap between Business, development teams and & IT OPS must be eliminated. 'You built it, You run it': this is the new credo of Agile teams. In the most optimal situation, the Agile teams (incl. the business Product Owner) should be responsible for the business functionality in production. Therefore the Agile teams are facilitated with fully automated software delivery pipelines and self-service portals to maintain the most crucial maintenance activities themselves. The Xebia proposition fits perfectly to the address both the technical and also process/people side of transition to close this gap.

Is your development en IT operations teams already organized as DevOps Teams? Has your team continuous focus on Quality? How much time do you waste on incidents? How do you reduce the human fail factor in your operations processes? With our organizational change experience and technical expertise we guide you to transform to a successful DevOps Organization.

More and more companies have successfully implemented Agile in their (IT) teams and Agile has proven to be a key element to stay ahead of the competition. Agile has been mostly implemented in (single) teams within a part of the organization and gradually spreads throughout the organization. Visible trends for companies that typically have to catch up on the competition don’t implement 1 or 2 Agile teams anymore. They do full Agile transformations from 0 to 30 Agile teams in IT and the business at ones. And companies that even grow over 50 Agile teams encounter new complex challenges. Consequently the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe®) has emerged to offer scaled solutions for these challenges. The increased usage of Agile in business and IT has led to the necessity to change the mindset of the whole company, not only on the floor for a few. Management topics are now also being directly influenced by Agile. Thus management needs to change drastically too. The most important Agile management topics are: Agile portfolio management, (Agile) budgeting, Agile leadership & management, Agile transition & change.

Agile has not only become the standard within IT, more and more Agile practices can be found outside IT. Good examples of this are: ‘Agile Extreme Manufacturing’ and ‘Agile within Marketing’.

SAFe®, the Scaled Agile Framework for your Scaled Agile Organization

Agile means delivering value to your customer. With the business to choose when to deliver to production, not when IT is ready, IT should be able to deliver at any time. With complex delivery chains and multiple interdependent teams, delivering value to end customers in high frequency is challenging. Also, a large organization usually means a complex organization. SAFe® offers a solution to connect portfolio management, program governance and Agile delivery teams. Additionally it delivers value in a high release frequency in a complex environment.

The Scaled Agile Framework is a widely used model for scaling Agile. The USP of SAFe® is it accessibility, with an easy to explain model supported by a well maintained website. It is detailed enough to provide guidance to your organization, yet open enough to adapt to specific implementations that characterize complex organizations. However it is also complex enough to become the next paper tiger in unskilled hands … SAFe® fosters a fast growing community and the organization behind SAFe® has proven to be able to keep up to the pace of its growth. Feedback from practitioners has led to major enhancements and new versions of the framework in 2013 and 2014 and specialized training material is published on a regular base. Xebia has led multiple Agile at Scale implementations since 2008. Currently Xebia hosts 25 SAFe® certified consultants and 5 certified SAFe® trainers. We combine our experience and access to experienced SAFe® resources to pragmatically get your SAFe® train on the rails. Xebia offers one-day and two-days (certified) trainings, which are scheduled regularly (both public and in-house).

We are getting more and more requests for Scrum outside IT. Not only in Extreme Engineering, but also Business and Marketing Scrum. Scrum and Agile are very powerful means to promote collaboration, faster time to market and after all more entrepreneurship in teams or enterprise. Somewhere in 2013 we got inspired by wikispeed to apply Scrum to manufacturing a car. After that we applied the same easy and effective principles (Scrum, Agile, lean, XM) to engineer a hydrogen and solar car. Those two teams were so effective and had that much fun that we are now using these principles and means as a very effective way to engineer, run, build and innovate all products.

As of now, we experiencing the take off of Scrum outside IT. “How will we create teams with power and passion in the enterprise?” “How will we create a product in 6 weeks instead of 2 years from concept to cash?” By using Extreme Engineering as a means. We are on the verge of the Internet of things. We can create our own jewelry by 3D printing it online. If your enterprise or engineering process still operates in the standardized and industrialized way, you will fall behind the startups. Small, specialized and empowered engineering teams using Scrum and Agile can out-run those start-ups. You have all the knowledge and experience already, now gain the speed. Let us help you get ahead and have better ownership and more fun with Extreme Engineering.

As we know, Scrum is a good framework for IT / software development projects to learn, adapt to change and deliver great software of value, faster. We have even seen it being used in a manufacturing context (wikispeed). We apply scrum also in another department of the enterprise: Marketing. The same principles are applied as done in software development. Despite some differences, Xebia has successfully implemented Scrum in the marketing departments of several large companies. Now a days these marketing teams use Scrum for the development of their campaigns and other commercial expressions.

Interested in how we approached and realized transition to Marketing Scrum? In our whitepaper "Marketing Scrum vs IT Scrum" we share our experienced at ANWB and ING Bank.

Nicole Belilos

Agile Champion
Nicole Belilos

Friday, 11 September, 2015

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Arlen Bankston

Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO)
Arlen Bankston

Wednesday, 16 September, 2015

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Jeff Sutherland

Certified Scrum Master (CSM) by Jeff Sutherland
Jeff Sutherland

Thursday, 17 September, 2015

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Jarl Meijer

Advanced Product Owner
Jarl Meijer

Wednesday, 23 September, 2015

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Pieter Rijken

Product Owner Foundation
Pieter Rijken

Monday, 28 September, 2015

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Pierluigi Pugliese

Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO)
Pierluigi Pugliese

Tuesday, 6 October, 2015

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You obtain optimal results from Continuous Delivery with an Agile organization. With the Agile Maturity Scan we visualize the agility of your organization. In your organization, you have worked for some time with Agile. The change has begun and the first results have become visible. But has Agile given you the results you expected? Or can the focus and the results be improved? What can be improved, and where do you start? And if you are satisfied with the results achieved so far, what is the next step to increase the benefits of Agile for your organization?

Underlying the Agile Maturity Scan is the Agile Maturity Model (AMM) that Xebia has developed in cooperation with its customers. This model provides objective indicators of the maturity and effectiveness of your Agile process in three areas: people, process and organization.

To perform a Value Stream Analysis the method Value Stream Mapping (VSM) is used. VSM is a method of visually mapping a product's production path from the beginning to end from a customer’s point of view. A VSM is made with the help from the employees involved in the process based on reality, not on how processes initially were designed and defined.

VSM can serve as a starting point to help management, product managers, product engineers and others, provides insight, recognize waste and identify its causes. The process includes physically mapping your "current state" while also focusing on where you want to be, which can serve as the foundation for improvement strategies.

So Value Stream Mapping can be a tool to manage your change process. The final step is to prepare and begin actively using an implementation plan that describes how you plan to achieve the “future state”.

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People join Xebia to better their full potential. We put a lot of effort into matching challenging assignments with the right Xebians.

Our thorough hiring procedure means you get to know us, and we get to know you. Everyone at Xebia has been through it, so you know that you can depend on the professional level of your new colleagues. For most joiners, working in an environment of very capable colleagues is a breath of fresh air. Mandatory knowledge sharing every two weeks means you do more then just work for your client.

We are always looking for inspiring new colleagues, and usually have more assignments then we can handle. Would you like to see if we have a match?