In today’s fast-paced world, business is a constantly evolving process. To survive and thrive, it becomes necessary for companies to be agile and conscious about their agility as they go through different cycles, with each news cycle bringing new factors impacting the company both positively and negatively.
So what is Agile Business Process? What is the difference with Lean Management? Here are some benefits businesses and ideas for implementing enterprise agility at your company.
What is Agile Business Process?
Agile Business Process is the ability to quickly and efficiently adapt one’s business model to minimize losses for an enterprise. But it’s more important now than ever because of rapid technological change that occurs almost daily.
Its roots come from software development. Over time, it has grown and expanded to apply to multiple areas of business operations.
When a business can rapidly respond to changing customer demands, they are far more likely to stay in operation. This allows them to serve and keep current customers happy as well.
Businesses that can change and adapt productively will thrive in a changing market as long they maintain quality of service. The key is not just being agile but also doing it cost-effectively without compromising your company’s success through rapid response times or efforts.
Agile Business Process Framework
The SAFe 5.0 defines business agility as seven core competencies that work to keep an organization together and agile regardless of its growth while remaining customer-centric.
Enterprise Solution Delivery
- Apply lean system engineering to build large systems
- Coordinate and align the full supply chain
- Continuously evolve systems
Agile Product Delivery
- Keep the customer at the center of your product management strategy
- Develop on cadence and release on demand for continuous delivery
- Continuously work to integrate, innovate, and deploy
Team and Technical Agility
- Build cross-functional, high-performing, and agile teams; break down silos within the organization
- Quality is built-in to make happy customers
Lean Portfolio Management
- Align strategy with funding and execution
- Optimize operations across the entire portfolio
- Deploy lightweight governance to allow for decentralized decision-making
- Foster an organization-wide Lean-Agile approach
- Respond quickly to threats and opportunities
- Lean out business operations
Continuous Learning Culture
- Build a culture where everyone learns and grows together in the organization, regardless of role
- Promote creativity and exploration as part of the company’s DNA.
- Focus on continuous improvement
- Model the desired behaviors to inspire others to do the same
- Align mindset, actions, and words to the Lean-Agile principles
- Actively lead and guide others to the new approach
The benefits of Agile Business Process
Responding to new market conditions or competitors. In a time where even our industries are changing and being challenged by new competitors, it’s important to be agile. You may not know what will come up next, but you can constantly adjust your business accordingly so that no matter how much change there is around us – we’ll still win out in the end.
Solving and responding to problems. No business can be perfect. You’ll eventually hit roadblocks like delayed shipments, faulty orders, and internal disruptions that prevent you from serving your customers properly if the company isn’t agile enough to recognize these problems before they damage.
Launching new products and services. Agility is about being innovative and willing to learn for your business to stay competitive. Depending on your goals, this could be an opportunity that puts pressure on other companies worldwide who want what they have already achieved with their strategies.
Minimizing time spent internally. Agile business practices can result in a more efficient and effective work environment for your staff. By identifying inefficiencies, you can make changes that improve their productivity – all while minimizing the amount of time they spend on internal operations.
How Can Businesses Become Agile?
Having a clear plan is one of the most important aspects for any company looking to become more agile. The six-step roadmap I’ve outlined below will help you get started and make sure your business stays on track with its goals.
Step #1: Delegate
You cannot expect agility while controlling business functions from behind the curtain. If you want to build agile teams, there must be an environment where there can be some flexibility and experimentation, so they don’t get bored with one task all day long.
Step #2: Define Your Goals
One of the first steps in creating a shared vision is engaging everyone and building consensus. It’s important for each departmentalization branch (partner, employee, etc.) Have their opinion about what they want out of this new agile reality because without that enthusiastic support-they won’t be able to make much progress.
One great way to communicate the goals with colleagues throughout the company was by using narratives. Telling stories from different perspectives, such as customers or other team members, helped them come together more quickly than ever before while understanding how they could all contribute to making something extraordinary happen.
Provide them with direction and a vision so they can have some input in making the reality of their plan come true! No matter how much-advanced work we do, things don’t always go according to plan when reality meets our expectations or desires. Therefore adaptation has become imperative as well.
To ensure that the team can buy into their approach and make agility a reality, you need clear expectations for what needs doing. You also trust them, so they know when things get tough – within clearly defined conditions. This ensures the team gets ownership of the transformation while also building agility.
Step #3: Onboard Your Employees
While the change may be difficult, your employees will feel more engaged when they know what’s happening in advance. You can make this process smoother by clearly defining expectations and why those changes are necessary for success.
Step #4: Allocate
Without allocating resources where they are needed to support an agile business structure, your initiative won’t succeed.
When you decide how to allocate resources, answer these questions:
- How will you decide what to invest in?
- Is it better to be open and transparent about the process?
- Do people know about the process?
- Can you disengage from business initiatives that lack potential and redirect them to agility-focused initiatives?
As you answer these questions, remember that “resources” don’t just include financial investments. It has executive attention, too.
Step #5: Measure
To make sure your team’s projects are a priority, give them the attention they need with executive monitoring. Continually monitor progress and provide updates when necessary. During the measurement phase, ask:
- What outcomes are measured by the senior-decision makers?
- How often are the leaders giving attention to the project?
- What metrics can be used to track success?
Step #6: Reward
Linking accountability to the success or failure of an initiative is an excellent way for managers and their teams. Managers should ensure that they know exactly what their expectations are, so if something goes wrong, it can be attributed at least partially due them.
- What kinds of behavior are supported and rewarded in your company? Are these aligned with your goals? If not, who has the authority to change them?
- How are people assigned to new positions? Are these assignments free of bias and made based on predetermined criteria?
- What are managers held accountable for?
- Do recognition and compensation support the necessary behavioral changes?
You can’t force business agility on an unwilling customer base. You’ll only achieve the benefits of this transformation when all teams within your organization are ready for change and have committed to working together to reach a point where they’ve created their agile method, like Scrum or Kanban-based systems, or built a hybrid approach that best suits their needs.
How Can Businesses Become Agile?
Encourage entrepreneurial thinking and autonomy. You empower them and allow free reign of decision-making. This will make the business more agile, leading to success for all parties involved.
Foster clusters of small teams. The key to being agile is not just about the size of your team. It’s also how you organize yourselves. If an organization has too many layers or levels between them and those beneath, it will never be able to achieve success on time with good quality. Instead, it’s better to work closely together in small teams.
Avoid becoming too accustomed to anything. Businesses are built on change, so you must be willing and ready for anything. You can’t get too attached or vested in your work culture because it’s constantly evolving.
Cut whatever isn’t working. If you’re trying to find a new lead generation strategy or perfect your approach, cut whatever isn’t working. If it doesn’t provide an objective benefit for the organization, get rid of dead weight and try something else.
Focus on sprints, instead of marathons. You may waste more time than necessary by planning out your significant projects too far in advance. It’s best to improve organization and work on short sprints rather than marathons so that they can be completed quicker with less wasted effort.
Check in regularly. Your organization needs reliable metrics to inform you of your progress and check in with them regularly. While at it, ask for feedback from employees on how they think the company could be made even more agile.
The path to agility is difficult, but it can be done. You’ll need to prioritize becoming more flexible and agile in your business with adjustments made on an ongoing basis until you achieve these goals efficiently-which might take some time.