The Agile Methodology is an awesome way to become more efficient as a team. But, as with any new business process, scaling Agile for Enterprise Teams, or across an entire organization, can be challenging.
Luckily, Agile has several ideologies that can help with scaling this process to fit your specific needs and way of working.
Here are three common methods that Enterprise Teams often use to scale Agile.
Scrum of Scrums (SoS)
The Scrum of Scrums (or SoS) involves breaking large teams into multiple smaller Scrum groups. The leaders of each of the smaller Scrum groups hold a ‘Scrum of Scrum’ — a meeting of their own — to discuss what is going on with their individual teams.
Team leaders still lead their own scrums and separately accomplish their own tasks, but their collaboration is what defines the Scrum of Scrums.
“For teams working on disparate projects or products that have no integration, the Scrum of Scrums is often used as a coordinating mechanism for the organization and may therefore meet less frequently.” – (Source)
Let’s break it down further — if there are four small scrum teams, one person from each of those teams will meet to relay information and make decisions. These people are referred to as ambassadors, leaders, or as Scrum Masters.
The SoS meeting is usually not very long, taking around the same time as a daily standup meeting.
“At the end of the sprint, each Scrum team has supplied a part of the product increment. The system under development grows incrementally through individual teams’ results.” – (Source).
Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe)
This method, developed by Dean Leffingwell, is often used by Enterprise Teams (or any larger-sized team). The Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) method is directed towards the Lean aspect of Agile. Unlike Scrum or Scrum of Scrums, it is more detailed and has a specific structure that teams have to follow.
Leffingwell’s official SAFe website offers training, resources, and more for those that want to implement this method with their teams.
“Based on a combination of agile and lean principles, SAFe calls for close collaboration and alignment across teams and aims to centralize decision-making.” – (Source).
Similar to Scrum of Scrums, SAFe makes it simpler for large companies who have multiple teams within their organization to work simultaneously. Working towards a common goal helps SAFe teams work seamlessly as one unit and provides a consistent work process across an entire organization.
Large Scale Scrum (LeSS)
Introduced by Craig Larman and Bas Vodde, the Large Scale Scrum (or LeSS) method is intended for large Agile teams.
Regular Scrum, ordinarily used for smaller teams, uses elements such as Sprints and Backlogs. LeSS also uses these processes but adapts them for the larger group.
In SoS, teams meet and work separately, then their leaders congregate to discuss what was worked on. But working with LeSS requires all teams in an organization to work together as a large group while still maintaining their own responsibilities.
The beauty of working with LeSS is that teams don’t have to be in the same location. They can work on their portions remotely and continue to strive towards the same goal.
“The various meetings such as sprint planning meeting, sprint review meeting and backlog refinement meeting will now be held at once and all the teams participate in these. This increases teamwork and the methodology results in proper alignment of the solution architecture.” – (Source).
This method works well for teams who like the original Scrum structure and want to keep that intact while they work.
These methods are popular ways to scale Agile for Enterprise Teams, giving everyone the direction they need to collaborate in the best way possible.
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