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last updated 3/25/2021 9:36:01 AM

Adopting Agile

Appling Agile methodologies outside of software development

71% of companies now implement some kind of agile methodology into their business (source Capterra). It is now more than well established that agile is not just applicable to software development. However, it doesn’t necessarily mean agile is a good fit for all aspects of a company, but there is generally a process or concept that companies may adopt to be more ‘agile’.

Before we review a Thai company that has made the switch to agile, it is important to understand what agile means. Originally created for software development, there were a few driving factors:

  • Projects often take months to develop, deliver and test (and generally were delayed)
  • Requirements (from the customer) often change throughout the project lifecycle

The two problems often manifest each other, which result in further delays, incomplete work and overall, wasted time, effort and resources from both parties. Agile is based on what is referred to as ‘iterations’, meaning that customers and suppliers/developers are working closely together and constantly reviewing work as completed, refining requirements and improving work process. As a result, work is completed much quicker, aligned with the changing requirements, and thus released to the market earlier.

When applying these concepts to more traditional parts of a company people often like to use buzz words like constant iteration and rapid prototyping. But essentially the magic lies with the ability to simply get feedback faster through better communication. When thinking about any business, it’s hard to think of a case where a project or organization would not benefit from better feedback loops.

Below, we take a look at how a technology company in Thailand embraced agile and never looked back. Gogoprint is an online

Below, we take a look at how a technology company in Thailand embraced agile and never looked back. Gogoprint is an online printing company in Thailand that specializes in business card printing and flyers, and many other products. They were originally exposed to Agile through their software development team while developing their e-commerce platform. They quickly realized their internal processes could also benefit from this increased productivity and improved communication agile delivered.

One example of how Gogoprint has implemented Agile techniques into a non tech division of their company is there sales and marketing team. In this case they implemented scrum, albeit a slightly adapted version of it. This has helped them increase productivity, and greatly improve the customer experience. On top of this they have continued to actively look at where they can apply agile internally, while also trying not to force it into a part of their company where it does not fit.  Looking to the future they plan to use agile to foster more innovation and hope it can give a competitive edge in a competitive industry.

Finally, while it may seem like a good idea to jump right in and try to apply these techniques at every opportunity it is important to have a good understanding of Agile first. Gogoprint had the advantage of being a technology company, so they already had a good understanding of Agile. We have seen many companies dive in headfirst and not sit back and look at what parts of the company should be prioritized based on what parts would most benefit from becoming more agile. At the same time, it is key to understand all the tools and the processors. For instance, trying to rollout Scrum teams to a team that do not understand the roles and working process behind Scrum may often lead to confusion, conflict and a lack of productivity. The best practice is often to identify where you are, and how Agile methods may help you reach that goal. for its corporate clients. They were originally exposed to Agile through their software development team while developing their e-commerce platform. They quickly realized their internal processes could also benefit from this increased productivity and improved communication agile delivered.

One example of how Gogoprint has implemented Agile techniques into a non tech division of their company is there sales and marketing team. In this case they implemented scrum, albeit a slightly adapted version of it. This has helped them increase productivity, and greatly improve the customer experience. On top of this they have continued to actively look at where they can apply agile internally, while also trying not to force it into a part of their company where it does not fit.  Looking to the future they plan to use agile to foster more innovation and hope it can give a competitive edge in a competitive industry. 

Finally, while it may seem like a good idea to jump right in and try to apply these techniques at every opportunity it is important to have a good understanding of Agile first. Gogoprint had the advantage of being a technology company, so they already had a good understanding of Agile. We have seen many companies dive in headfirst and not sit back and look at what parts of the company should be prioritized based on what parts would most benefit from becoming more agile. At the same time, it is key to understand all the tools and the processors. For instance, trying to rollout Scrum teams to a team that do not understand the roles and working process behind Scrum may often lead to confusion, conflict and a lack of productivity. The best practice is often to identify where you are, and how Agile methods may help you reach that goal.