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Going Agile: Key Principles

Author: SSwales/January 14, 2015

Agile methodology is a concept increasingly used within the business world, but the term may still be a little unfamiliar to some. Agility provides an alternative method of project management, allowing a business to focus on delivering their final product at a much quicker pace. Traditionally used in the software engineering industry, the principle of ‘going agile’ revolves around breaking down projects into their constituent parts and completing one individual assignment at a time to a short deadline. Business agility is practised by companies of all sizes: huge corporations find benefits in its applicability to varying work styles, while it may be useful to tiny startups as it maximises output and work efficiency.

Versatility

Today, being versatile is often valued as or more highly than perfection when it comes to deliverables. Project management frequently involves a high degree of unpredictability: demands change, people unexpectedly drop out or seek involvement, or an idea may simply just not work. Agile management is a highly effective way of coping with the unpredictability endemic in undertaking a project: by tackling a large project a small block at a time, it is easy to change tack or modify an element without having to start from scratch and waste precious hours of work. It also precludes the likelihood of work stalling while tiny details are finalised. While some businesses spend endless hours ironing out the creases and meticulously ensuring the finished product is tweaked to perfection, often at the expense of meeting deadlines or completion percentages, many agile businesses are now happy to acknowledge that one hundred percent perfection is not always necessary as long as tight deadlines have been met.

Short Term Goals

Pressure will always exist for companies to be both faster and smarter, and delivering high quality work without compromising on either speed or excellence brings with it yet more difficulties. Instead of concentrating on large projects and becoming overwhelmed by the scale of the work, agile businesses focus on much smaller projects which can be completed and distributed in a much speedier time period. Generally, agile project managers will break tasks down into their smallest constituent parts, categorising these in order of ease and urgency of completion; the tasks are then divided up between those working on the project, and staff then work solely on one task at a time to a short deadline until each element of the project is in place. While each task is underway its executive will give it their full attention, working on nothing else until this ‘sprint’ of work is over and the deadline has been met.

Stress Removal

Adapting to an agile work method may have its difficulties, but any teething problems should be balanced out by the speed and ease of project management once everyone involved has successfully adopted the method. From a wider perspective, there have been numerous major advancements which have aided businesses in adapting to these changes, such as the development of software which enables monotonous but necessary tasks to be streamlined and completed by computers automatically. Such developments reduce or eliminate distractions such as admin and progress tracking, meaning that people can use this extra time to maximise their efficiency and improve their overall agility.

How can LEO help?

Time efficiency in agile work may also be maximised by making sure the absolute basics are taken care of, leaving staff free to get on with their work; this secondary method of improving your business agility levels is exemplified by the amenities offered by LEO’s serviced offices. Besides providing business owners and their employees with secure private networks, high speed internet connections and all the tools needed to run a business smoothly and successfully, there are numerous IT and information management solutions on offer at LEO, too.

LEO’s serviced office benefits include IT infrastructure provision – a time consuming distraction for any business to take care of – which can be tailored to suit your individual needs, allowing you to focus entirely on your own important issues. Other options are managed IT support: businesses can be assigned a dedicated team who will assist with any technical problems, monitoring and updating network and executing server administration, amongst other benefits. Data storage at LEO is managed via the Cloud, allowing data to be secure yet easily shareable. Additionally, Cloud takes away the worries of potential storage malfunctions, slow servers and time lost waiting for systems to respond.

For true workplace efficiency, LEO can even cover administration and maintenance duties, meaning there is no need for employees to break from their working day to answer or divert calls, or involve themselves in cleaning duties. LEO assures nothing but discretion and professionalism from anyone representing your company, leaving businesses free to continue doing what they do best – going agile.

For any enquiries please contact: Serviced Offices: +44 (0)20 3008 8888 | Meeting Rooms: +44 (0)20 3008 8889

 

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