On An Agile Scaling Journey? Take Our Survey To Find Out How You Are Doing

Diego Lo Giudice

This year I’m excited to be teaming up with Amanda LeClair on the biannual Forrester Agile At Scale Adoption Survey. For the 2017 study, we’ve added a few more questions in areas that we see organizations struggle with. So in addition to successful Agile team practices, alignment with business stakeholders upstream and downstream with testing and operations, we are looking into more Agile at scale issues like budgeting and DevOps. Software development leaders continue to buy into Agile while eradicating traditional waterfall development. In the last Agile survey in 2015, we found that 46% of the respondents are still doing what Forrester calls Water-Agile-Fall, but not on a path to faster delivery. Leading innovator teams, which we called Agile Expert firms, have quickly turned passion projects into Agile success stories. But enterprises don’t just need to be quick and flexible on net-new projects or only at the individual team level; they need speed across the business.

As software teams mature along their Agile transformation, the biggest obstacle still is, despite some improvements, to scale up and horizontally. This means truly linking Agile initiatives, Design thinking and DevOps with business value. Our biannual Agile survey tracking the health of Agile initiatives for 2017 keeps its focus on the main challenge: Agile At Scale.

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The Downside Of Digital Labs For Financial Innovation

Diego Lo Giudice

The race to digital is heating up in financial services (FS) organizations; increasingly, the engine making this happen is Agile. Why? Quite simply, it is software that makes any financial business truly digital. Organizations are therefore in a rush to become great at rapidly innovating, developing, and delivering new software products to win new clients and retain and serve existing ones.

Oliwia Berdak and I have just published twin reports — one for eBusiness and channel strategy professionals, and one for AD&D leaders — that share our findings on how FS organizations are trying to ramp up their digital innovation capabilities rapidly by leveraging Agile and other innovative models. 

Our key finding comes in response to a question: Are you building a digital lab that contains great developers but is isolated from key business leaders and other technology management teams? If the answer is yes, don’t! If separate digital units pursue disruptive opportunities, they will often end up with just front-end apps or proofs of concept that are impossible to integrate and scale with same speed they were developed.

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The Essence Of Agile Testing: Make Testing Part Of Your SDLC (And Much More)

Diego Lo Giudice

DevOps is a movement for developers and operations professionals that encourages more collaboration and release automation. Why? To keep up with the faster application delivery pace of Agile. In fact, with Agile, as development teams deliver faster and in shorter cycles, IT operations finds itself unprepared to keep up with the new pace. For operations teams, managing a continuous stream of software delivery with traditional manual-based processes is Mission Impossible. Vendors have responded to DevOps requirements with more automation in their release management, delivery, and deployment tools. However, there is a key process that sits between development and operations that seems to have been given little attention: testing.   

In fact, some key testing activities, like integration testing and end-to-end performance testing, are caught right in the middle of the handover process between development and operations. In the Agile and Lean playbook, I’ve dedicated my latest research precisely to Agile testing, because I’ve seen testing as the black beast in many transformations to Agile because it was initially ignored.

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Agile Development Makes Business Technology Come True; It Embodies Business Value In Software

Diego Lo Giudice

There is no doubt that Agile growth in the market is significant, and the growing daily number of inquiries I’ve been getting on Agile from end user organizations in 2012 gives me the impression that many are moving from tactical to strategic adoption. Why’s that? Many reasons, and you can read about them in our focused research on Agile transformation on the Forrester website. But I’d like to summarize the top five reasons from my recent research “Determine The Business And IT Impact Of Agile Development” :

  • Quality was the top — quite astonishing, but both the survey we ran across 205 Agile “professional adopters” and the interviews across some 21 organizations confirmed this. My read is that this is about functional quality.
  • Change was second to quality. We live in an era where innovation strives and organizations are continuously developing new apps and projects. But your business does not necessarily know what it needs or wants upfront. The business really appreciates the due-course changes that Agile development allows, as they enable the business to experiment and try out various options so it can become more confident about what is really right for the organization. Cutting edge cutting edge systems-of-engagement (Mobile, Web-facing, Social-media, etc) require lots of Change in due course.
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Agile Software Is A Cop-Out; Here’s What’s Next

Mike Gualtieri

Never has a new trend annoyed me as much as Agile. Right from the get-go, the Agile Manifesto revealed the weaknesses and immaturity of the founding principles. The two most disturbing: “Working software is the primary measure of progress” and “Business people and developers must work together daily throughout the project.” These are

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