Use an Agile Transformation Team

Those who deal with the topic of agility in more detail in preparation for the use of agile teams in the company have created an agile awareness. In doing so, he understood that it is about more than just a project team developing a product using a different method. In addition to the agile teams, the change process also concerns the environment of these teams, the managers, as well as the value system and corporate culture. A transformation team is deployed to moderate this complex process in a structured manner from the outset and to support it to the best of its ability.

The agile transformation team

Complex processes are particularly useful for working successfully with agility. Therefore, the transformation team works completely agile. First of all, all roles must be filled. The transformation team needs a product owner. Ideally, this role is filled by a member of the top leadership. This person is responsible for the backlog and may need to. also use budgets e.B. for Culture Change Programs. In addition, the role of the Scrum Master must be filled. This is a good time for a person who already has practical experience with the method. In addition, it should have a certain "standing" in order to be able to talk about behavioural changes on an equal footing with managers at all levels. Acceptance is an important factor here. Last but not least, a "working team" is needed. It makes sense to staff this team with people from different areas and hierarchy levels who are well connected with colleagues. Ultimately, all employees of the company should be involved in the agile transformation. However, not all employees in the transformation team can participate. Here, as with other agile teams, the rule applies that a maximum of 11 people should be including product owners and scrum masters in order to work as efficiently as possible.

Here you can find more information about Scrum and a Scrum Wiki on the most important terms.

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Similar to the product vision, the transformation team needs a transformation vision. This includes the mission statement on which the transformation process should be orientated. Based on this vision, the product owner develops the initial backlog. Since many points in the transformation are open to results at the beginning, i.e. no one can tell exactly in which form and how it is implemented at the starting point, the initial backlog consists to a large extent of items that deal with clarifications. Of course, there can also be very specific items, such as.B. the equipment of the agile rooms.

The transformation team works in scrum mode

Based on the initial backlog, the transformation team starts work. It works in sprints and runs all the events required in a scrum mode. A challenge for sprint planning is that the members of the scrum team usually do not work full-time on the transformation. Therefore, they plan their tasks for the upcoming sprint based on the time they can provide for this task. In the Daily, members report on the progress that has been made and what is next, or what impediments (obstacles) they have encountered. The review is of particular importance because a transformation team has a broad base of stakeholders. On the one hand, these are the employees who are supposed to work agilely later or have been doing this for some time. For them, it is important to create the best framework conditions for agile working in their projects. In addition, the managers are affected, whose role is changing considerably and who have to change their management style. Management is also particularly important. They must support or even live up to the new cultural values. This also applies to the non-agile areas. The core of agility is usually the development area. Areas in the environment can only partially or conditionally adapt methods such as Scrum or Kanban. Nevertheless, they must be included in the new system of values and leadership.

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This process of change is a major challenge for every company. Often, when installing an agile pilot, it is underestimated which topics are addressed sooner or later by the teams, or perhaps even demanded, because they are not able to solve them within their team. An early transformation team takes on these topics and ensures that agility does not become an agile show, but a real benefit for the company.

The support of experienced agile coaches is extremely helpful in this process. Many of the items that appear in the transformation team's backlog are completely new to the team members. Of course, after some iterations in which you can learn, you will usually find sensible solutions to these topics. Often, however, the right approach can be used to efficiently arrive at a better solution if you allow the outside view and can incorporate the experience of other companies. This also applies to the next step, the launch of the agile pilot.

The consultants at CO Improve can also contribute many years of experience from numerous agile transformations to your change process. It pays to take the right steps in the new territory, especially at the beginning.

Your benefits
  • They take advantage of real agile work faster.
  • They develop their individual, company-specific agile framework including a governance model.
  • All areas and all hierarchy levels are systematically included in the agile transformation from the beginning.
  • The value system introduced with agility meets with high acceptance, because all participants were involved in the design.
  • The interfaces to and from the agile teams are clearly defined and areas that will not be agile in the long term know their role in dealing with agile teams.