As with any important journey, a road map helps you determine your location and which direction you need to go to reach your goal.
That’s why we created the Agile Maturity Matrix.
We encourage you to download a copy for yourself, study it, and determine which direction your company is currently traveling on your journey to Agile.
Along the left side you’ll note three sections we’ve labeled “Maturity Factors.” Across the top are the four phases of Agile maturity: Learning, Practicing, Optimizing, and Scaling.
Core Maturity Factors
The first group of “Maturity Factors” is considered “Core Factors.” Without these basics in hand, going Agile is like trying to hit the open road with bald tires and without gas in the tank.
These core factors include a basic understanding of Agile roles and responsibilities, Agile processes, team collaboration, and Agile requirements. As you move across the matrix from right to left you’ll see that companies going Agile will run the gamut from barely understanding what these core concepts mean to full adherence and efficient implementation across the board.
Of course, most companies will fall somewhere in between, with different aspects of the core factors falling in various levels of maturity.
That okay. There are no wrong answers here. The point is to make an honest self-assessment so you know what’s needed to move forward.
Factors for Implementing and Improving
Moving down the left side of the chart, we come to the second set of maturity factors, labeled “Implementing and Improving.” These factors determine how fast you’re going to travel and how smooth of a ride it’s going to be.
This second group of maturity factors involve how well your team(s) are adopting Agile concepts, including some “soft skill” aspects of the transition such as the level of productivity and team morale you’re experiencing.
Again, as you move across the matrix, you’ll see that immature companies may find themselves dealing with very low productivity and morale at this stage. Unfortunately, this is where some teams and organizations throw in the towel and decide, “Agile doesn’t work.”
If you’re experiencing these growing pains, don’t get frustrated. As you can see further to the right, as maturity increases, companies find productivity shoots up, morale stays high, and all affected teams are enjoying complete adoption.
Factors of Oversight
The third and final group of maturity factors involve oversight of the Agile journey. We might equate these to understanding the rules of the road, keeping your vehicle at or below the speed limit, and between the lines.
Agile governance – the establishment of standards, metrics, and best practices that make sense for your organization’s unique journey – is a huge part of these factors. Without some level of rules and expectations in place, it’s nearly impossible to work with any sort of scalable consistency and it is difficult to measure success.
Another important factor is your company’s effective use of Agile tools to make the process uniform and seamless for everyone involved.
While an immature company may be able to get things started in Agile with little or no governance using a white board and some sticky notes, more formalized tools and techniques are required to keep things going smoothly as their journey continues and they mature.
The AAA of Your Agile Journey
Again, as you review the matrix, make an effort to determine your place honestly. As we noted above, there are no wrong answers, as long as they’re honest.
In the furthest column over to the right, you’ll notice some suggestions for how cPrime can help you move in the right direction no matter where you find yourself on the Agile Maturity Matrix. Once you’ve assessed your position, contact us to discuss how to get you where you want to go.