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Agile delivery trends

What you can expect in 2021–2022

In many organizations, traditional business practices and organizational silos have already begun making room for more modern structures and agile ways of working. This is an extensive process that takes time, effort and coordination – especially when scaling throughout the organization. DevOps culture has a big part in establishing the necessary end-to-end thinking.

Trend #1 Business and organizational agility

Business agility is the ability to redefine the value proposition for clients based on real data, and (re)organize activities and people accordingly when needed.

Organizational agility extends the agile mindset, structures, decision making, governance, organising, target setting and other practices to the parts of the organization that are engaged first-hand within the value streams. Organizational agility covers all the functions as well as how they support business agility and represent the agile mindset.

Trend #2 Scaled agile

The need to align agile activities and have a scaled agile approach becomes more important with better business and organizational agility. SAFe has been the most scaled version of scaled agile, with Less emerging as the surprise contender in a few occasions.

However, more companies are also moving on and finding their own way to fulfill the mindset of scaled agile instead of following predetermined sets of rules and structures. This is a journey that takes time.

Trend #3 Multidisciplinary thinking and DevOps culture

Breaking away from silos into multidisciplinary thinking with an end-to-end perspective – these are not completely new ideas, but surprisingly complex and therefore difficult and slow to implement, especially in large and traditional organizations.

Clarifying client-centricity and organizing teams according to it helps them find the right structures and focus on value creation for the client and avoid unnecessary handovers. Delivering value to clients continuously keeps the focus fresh and helps maintain the appropriate sense of urgency.

Multidisciplinary teams that are organized according to the client’s most noteworthy problem areas help ensure a holistic and efficient approach to problem solving.

Trend #4 Agile as the facilitator of new paradigms

Agile seems to be aging very well and upholding its core ideas with the new emerging paradigms.

It enables the activities and practices that aim at defining the vision and then moving forward by validating, iterating and delivering all the way. This works especially well with new and complex ideas when exact needs and outcomes aren’t known but rather learned along the journey.

Volatility caused by the Covid-19 pandemic highlights the need for agile strategies: it is crucial not to get stuck with old plans that become obsolete in a volatile environment. Agile strategies help build the trust needed to take the necessary steps forward through an iterative approach, and avoid getting paralyzed by disruptions.

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