Scaling Agile across the Global Organization: An Early Stage Industrial SAFe Self-Assessment
The adoption, scaling and tailoring of agile methods depends on several factors, such as the size of the software development organization, business goals, and operative model. The Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) was developed to support organizations in scaling agile practices across the enterprise.
Large multi-national enterprises report that adoption of SAFe led to significant productivity and quality gains. However, whether these benefits translate to small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs) is unknown.
As such, in this study we ask: To what extent can SAFe practices be implemented in a global SME? We administrated three surveys to members of the development organization of an Irish SME, to identify and evaluate the adoption rate of SAFe practices in the Global environment.
We found teams and program level personnel are transitioning well towards SAFe. But the Portfolio level personnel appear not to have, as yet, adopted many SAFe practices.
Our study suggests that in an SME context it might not be necessary for Portfolio level members to fully adopt SAFe providing they are supportive of their teams. The SAFe self-assessment did serve to highlight where training is required, to improve the vertical communication between teams, program level and upper management.
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