Sunday, November 8, 2015

Agile IT Governance

Agile Principle: Respond to change over following a plan.

Change is the new normal for businesses today, there are culture changes, process changes, or software change management, etc. Agile is about being able to efficiently respond to change. Various Agile methodologies exist to adopt different responses depending on the nature of the change, especially predictable unknowns, and unpredictable unknowns. Hence, governance practices need to be sufficiently informed and able to keep pace with what is going on. The joint needs of Agile projects and a commitment to IT governance will increase the extent to which a number of IT management practices have to participate in projects, with a consequent cost.

Agile IT governance procedures for managing cross-teams dependencies, issues, and risks are integral success factors for IT agility. Applying Agile philosophy and principles to build a disciplined Agile delivery environment where to address the full delivery lifecycle involving agile and non-agile teams, several core methods are combined, or a few “traditional” practices, such as doing some up-front requirements and architecture modeling tailored to reflect agile philosophies, are adopted to round out the overall solution delivery process. Also, Agile isn't a silver bullet and it's not always appropriate. in large organizations there are many reasons for establishing consistency across a broader scope. These may be opportunistic to improve productivity or business critical issues, such as optimizing common customer experience, common capabilities that facilitate rapid change with a minimum horizon of impact.

Agile IT governance is less about structure and rules than being focused, effective, and accountable. Agile IT organizations bring a governance approach to Agile projects, which maintains the self-governance, but on two levels a) the team, and b) the community of interest, which is a collaboration of cross-functional teams, that manage the platform of common core code. IT organizations automate the common core which has major benefits in both productivity and agility. Addressing risks, issues, concerns, and communicating actions across the organization is also a key responsibility referring to the leadership within the governance structure in an agile environment.

Applying Agile principle, “people over process” to practice IT governance: People use the process of governance to enhance the delivery of business value on time in tranches that meet the business needs. Put emphasis on a solution that 'all employees can leverage.' Any solution with that kind of 'reach' is on the right track. Good governance practices should touch on issues of engagement, shared commitment, alignment between strategic business goals and workforce management etc. An organization that values hierarchy and status quo over the trust, collaboration and the freedom to innovate and learn will be a poor fit for Agile. It is a trade-off that can appear to be a black-and-white one between order and chaos to those who cling to status quo. Good governance practices can strike the right balance of standardization and innovation.

Strong governance disciplines can steer IT toward a value-added position and manage risks effectively under the dynamic and information-overloading environment in maintaining predictability and quality. Agile governance is not just another buzzword, but following a set of Agile principles to drive business and IT change and increase the business value the most via the right order: people, process, and technology.


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