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Expanding SAFe: discovering results in new places

Getting an organization to the tipping point can be challenging, but once a few Agile Release Trains (ARTs) have been launched, how can the Scaled Agile Framework® (SAFe®) be expanded across the organization? What is the process for taking SAFe to the Program and Portfolio Levels? The Implementation Roadmap provides guidance for growing SAFe within an organization, including the training and toolkits needed to expand SAFe, but what are the next key steps?

Conduct the Inspect and Adapt

The next important step is to conduct the first Inspect and Adapt (I&A). This is critical to the success of further implementation. Identifying the roadblocks faced during the first ART launch and making preparations to avoid them in the future is critical to moving forward faster. The philosophy of continuous improvement is integral to Agile, Lean Thinking, and SAFe. Relentless Improvement is one of the four pillars of SAFe’s House of Lean, and the I&A event is a significant part of this. For more information, visit the Inspect and Adapt section of the Framework site.

Launch more ARTs and Value Streams

Now that the first ART has been successfully launched and the team has been through the first Inspect and Adapt, it is time to open the throttle on the SAFe implementation, discovering results in new places. This stage allows the business to start realizing the fuller benefits of SAFe. By now, SAFe Program Consultants (SPCs), the Lean Agile Center of Excellence, and other stakeholders have the experience needed to launch more ARTs. More ARTs equate to more value. If not, it might be time to reach out to Scaled Agile or the Scaled Agile Partner Network for an assessment.

Learn more about opening the throttle, identifying roles during this stage, and overcoming impediments by reading the guidance article for launching more ARTs and value streams.

Sustaining growth

Depending on the enterprise, leaders might need help in keeping the SAFe transformation on track. They may have a hard time articulating the value of SAFe, they might have some internal SPCs that are finding trouble getting buy-in for SAFe, or they might need help figuring out the best tools and training to get them where they need to go.

Do they need onsite SPC classes to build a coalition for change and to get people talking the same language? Do they need to teach Leading SAFe® to achieve management and executive buy-in? Do they have a very complex implementation, and they’re finding it hard to identify value streams and ARTs? These can be perfect examples of when it’s the right time to reach out for help. If leaders need a coach or mentor, facilitator for the Release Train Engineer (RTE) for that first ART launch to get them up to speed, or they’re extending their SAFe implementation to the portfolio by building a Lean Portfolio Management Team, help is available.

The Importance of Platform Partners

While managing an Agile transformation at the Team Level can be as easy as putting stickies on the Kanban board and moving them across the sprints, managing Agile transformations across the enterprise becomes infinitely more complex.

  • What happens when development teams are spread across 13 countries and 35 product development sites?
  • What happens when multiple Agile Release Trains (ARTs) are running simultaneously?
  • How can all those stickies, Stories, Features, and Epics be organized?

The answer lies in finding a great platform partner who can help keep teams aligned and provide visibility across the organization.

Trusted platform vendors such as Atlassian, JIRA, AgileCraft, CA Technologies, and VersionOne all support the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) within their environments.

Get SAFe help

The Scaled Agile Framework® (SAFe®) helps over 70 percent of the US Fortune 100 enterprises continuously deliver value on a regular and predictable schedule. Are you ready to get started?

Our Sales Solution Experts can guide you in selecting the appropriate purchasing option based on the level of your organization’s Lean-Agile maturity and the complexity of the systems your enterprise is designing.

We’ve directly supported thousands of SAFe enterprise transformations, and would love to lend our experience to help yours.