What is the SAFe (Scaled Agile Framework)?
The Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) is a publicly accessible online knowledge source that enables the business to adopt lean-agile techniques. It offers a straightforward and lightweight environment for program development. It is a collection of organizational structures and workflow patterns designed to assist businesses in scaling lean and agile techniques. It is divided into three sections: team, program, and portfolio.
The SAFe framework enables teams to,
- Lean-Agile software and system implementation at the corporate level
- It is built on the concepts of Lean and Agile development.
- It provides comprehensive advice for enterprise-wide work at the Portfolio, Value Stream, Program, and Team levels.
- It is intended to accommodate the requirements of all stakeholders within an organization.
SAFe was first conceived in the field and expanded upon in Dean Leffingwell’s books and blog. Version 1.0 is the first official release, which occurred in 2011. The most recent release is 4.6, which was made available in October 2018. It offers advice on how to approach work at the enterprise Portfolio, Value Stream, Program, and Team levels.
Why Should You Use an Agile Framework?
It is a lightweight and simple framework that is capable of supporting huge value streams and sophisticated system development. You will gain from adopting the SAFe agile framework in the following ways:
Productivity improved by between 20% and 50%.
- The standard of quality has risen by more than 50%.
- Time to Market is reduced by 30% to 75%.
- Employee involvement and work satisfaction increased.
When Should a Scaled Agile Framework Be Used?
- When a team want to consistently use an agile methodology across big, multi-team projects and portfolios.
- When many teams adopt Agile in their own unique manner yet often encounter difficulties, delays, and failures.
- When teams want autonomy.
- When you wish to expand Agile throughout your company but are unsure of what new roles will be required or how current roles (for example, management) would need to adapt.
- When you’ve tried to expand Agile throughout your company but are having difficulty achieving uniform or consistent strategy across business units, from portfolio to program to team.
- When a company wants to reduce the time required for product development and wishes to learn how other organizations have scaled Agile using SAFe.
How does this differ from other Agile practices?
Now, in this Scaled Agile Framework lesson, we’ll look into what differentiates Scaled Agile from other agile methods.
- It is open to the public and is completely free to use.
- Available in a very accessible and useful format.
- It is compact, has been clinically shown to work, and is level-specific.
- It is constantly/regularly adapting/maintaining the most prevalent agile techniques.
- Provides beneficial additions to well-known agile techniques.
- Establishes a foundation for agile techniques in a corporate setting.
- Provides a comprehensive view of software development.
- On all levels, visibility or transparency is preferred.
Lean-Agile SAFe Principles
To achieve the intended outcomes, these fundamental SAFe Agile concepts and values must be understood, shown, and sustained.
- Consider the economic situation.
- Utilize systemic thinking
- Assume a degree of unpredictability; maintain options
- Construct progressively via rapid, integrated learning cycles.
- Establish milestones based on an impartial assessment of operational systems.
- Visualize and control work-in-progress, batch sizes, and queue lengths
- Maintain a cadence and maintain synchronization with cross-domain planning.
- Unlock knowledge workers’ intrinsic motivation
- Decisiveness should be decentralized
Agile SAFe Core Values
These four principles serve as the foundation for the SAFe Agile approach.
- SAFe encourages alignment.
- Alignment begins with,
- Portfolio Backlog Strategic Themes and
- Reduces to the Program Backlog’s Vision and Roadmap and then
- Transferred to the Team Backlogs.
- It guarantees that each subsequent supply adheres to the quality requirements.
- Quality is not something that is “added afterwards.” It is built in.
- Built-in quality is a precondition for Lean and a need.
- Transparency enables trust.
- SAFe enables transparency at all levels of the business, including executives, portfolio managers, and other stakeholders.
- The portfolio backlog/Kanban, program backlogs/Kanban, and team backlog/Kanban are all visible to everyone.
- Each level has a firm grasp of the PI objectives.
- Train Programs have insight into their team’s backlogs, as well as into the backlogs of other programs.
- Epics for business and architecture are visible to teams and programs. They are aware of what may be coming their way.
Execution of the Program:
SAFe puts a premium on operational systems and their associated business results.
SAFe is useless if teams are unable of executing and continually delivering value.
Lean Agile Leaders
Lean Agile Leaders are critical thinkers and educators. It assists teams in developing better systems by educating them about and demonstrating the Lean-Agile SAFe principles.
As an enabler of teams, your ultimate duty is to ensure the adoption, success, and continuous improvement of Lean-Agile development. Leaders must be taught in order to effect change and continual development.
Leaders must embrace a new leadership style. One that really enables and engages people and teams to perform at their best.
These are the Lean-Agile Leaders’ Principles
- Initiate Change
- Know Your Way; Place a Premium on Lifelong Learning
- Develop Individuals
- Motivate and Align with the Mission; Reduce Constraints
- Decentralize Decision-Making to Unlock Knowledge Workers’ Intrinsic Motivation
- The primary objective is to satisfy the client by delivering useful software on a consistent and timely basis.
- Accept evolving needs, even late in the development process. Agile SAFe methodology procedures facilitate change for the benefit of the client.
- Deliver functional software often, on a timeframe ranging from a few weeks to a few months, with a bias for the shorter period.
- Throughout the duration of the project, developers and businesspeople must collaborate regularly.
- Create initiatives that revolve on motivated people. Provide them with the necessary support and atmosphere, and trust them to get the job done.
- Face-to-face contact with a development team is the most efficient form of communication.
- The main metric of progress is functional software.
- Agile methods are conducive to long-term growth. Sponsors, developers, and consumers should be able to sustain an endlessly consistent pace.
- Continuous focus on technical excellence and excellent design enables agility to be increased.
- Simplicity–the skill of minimizing labor that is not completed–is critical.
- Self-organizing teams provide the finest architectures, requirements, and designs.
- The team periodically thinks on how to improve its effectiveness and then tweaks and changes its behavior appropriately.
SAFe is a time-tested, value-driven methodology for scaling Agile at the enterprise level.
It addresses issues such as “How do we plan?” “How do we budget?” and “How do we achieve cross-functional architecture and DevOps?”
The SAFe Agile framework enables big company teams to focus on the organization’s strategic objectives, rather than on specific project objectives.
The framework enables the maintenance and development of a centralized strategy for value delivery.
The SAFe model is composed of three/four layers that serve to concentrate an organization’s strategic themes.
Combining centralized strategy with decentralized agile development execution.