It’s all about Business Agility and recognising that without business adopting more agility, IT delivery cannot achieve the benefits of agile adoption.
Customers ask more of organisations now and require that they quickly respond to changes in the marketplace and emerging opportunities with innovation and speed. As a result, it is the first time we see the customer on the main page. Reinforcing their importance. Concepts like design thinking and customer-centricity are not new but highlighted more so than ever.
SAFe 5.0 encourages Lean Portfolios to continually revisit the customer proposition each solution provides adjusting strategic themes based on leading indicators and customer feedback. There is a new principle; Organise around Value. Previous versions of SAFe addressed value stream mapping and organising teams around value. When conducting value stream mapping, the goal is to understand how your customers receive value from your products (from concept to cash), and then to build your teams and Agile Release Trainers around that stream of value. Although this principle is significant, organisations often struggle to achieve it as it requires often substantial organisational changes.
By aligning Business and IT delivery we recognise it is an end-to-end team who can deliver outcomes to customers which are higher quality and delight customers.
This forms the basis of one of the new competencies of SAFe 5.0; Organisational Agility, swarming truly cross-functional virtual teams which deliver solutions to customers, including financial, legal, marketing etc. The second new competency is around the Continuous Learning Culture which is required to adapt and grow talent, focusing on a growth mindset as opposed to a fixed one and the appropriate behaviours that align with this ever-changing landscape.
So how do you know if your organisation is shifting towards more agile ways of working? SAFe have introduced a new Business Agility Assessment that enables organisations to measure their level of business agility and help determine how to accelerate their growth.