Donnerstag, 4. April 2013

Agile Strategy: the power of human factors in the design and support of your business applications management

ITIL ®V3 (IT Service Management) 
PRINCE2 ® (Projects in Controlled Environments)
Agile Management Innovations
Wirtschaftsinformatik  - Diplom-Ingenieur
Informatikmanagement - Mag. rer. soc. oec
Wirtschaftsinformatik - Bakk.rer. soc. oec
Social Science - DEUG

Agile strategy is an innovative strategy model that enables companies to work with human factors and business cases successfully. In this article I explore human factors to apply the practice of collaborative innovation as a means to realize with success the conception and the strategy of  a business applications management.

A Business Partner, Chief Information Officer (CIO), and IT Department that sit around and wait for the Business Application Strategy to be formalised to build a robust business application management strategy and vision could  not respond efficient and optimal to their businesses needs, behaviours and transformations. The  Business Application  Bottom line is that the Business Application Strategy should support business objectives, behaviours,  and transformations with new technology, new business application as needed as the IT department delivers effective Business application Services and innovative technology solutions to respond and  improve competitiveness, demonstrated and articulated in a dynamic business environment and IT market trend.

An integrated agile business applications management that rewards IT department with more satisfying work and customers with more useful business applications.

For example: 1.) Customers describe subset of needs. 2.) Team commits on what they can deliver. 3.) Team agrees on good, sustainable working conditions. 4.) Team delivers and supports acceptable, quality product. 5.) Repeat.

Fig. Source: Management PLaza

Today’s business environments are dynamic, and present companies with unprecedented business strategy challenges. Optimizing processes, setting key performance indicators, choosing the most famous IT framework etc. do not guarantee  any more success. Designing and supporting well business applications today requires a new management model, and new human factors approach strategy. 

Agile strategy is an innovative strategy model that could enable companies to design and support a successfully business application in an unstable and complicated environment...

…means that agile software development methodology is a correct methodology to build business application strategy? 

The interaction, the collaboration, the continually feedbacks, the involvement of external and internal customers etc. are some keys factors that empower integrated agile business applications management. Using agile software development methodology peer to peer for designing and supporting business application may not work. Integrated agile business applications management requires an innovative agile management process. An innovation that combines well human factors and machines processes.

…integrated agile business applications, ensuring  your customer collaboration 

The primary objective of this new business application management model, and of agile strategy, is to maximize the business applications economic value that IT departments deliver to both their customers and  stakeholders through  well collaboration and participation processes. This means human factors are taking into account while deciding, testing and  making choice on what business applications to use.

…designing a successful business application strategy

Framework and processes do not guarantee absolute the success of your business application alignment and transformation.  To accomplish this central goal, IT department must be designed to break down the distance that normally comes with IT services  and the customers business requirements.

 People are the most important factors, both internally and externally, when designing and driving business applications innovation within a company.  It is mandatory to take into account the human factors to build a successful business application strategy....

…engaging  your customers in the choice/designing of your business applications management line 

Focusing on the customers’ needs and rapid response to the customers’ business requirements are the key challenges of  the designing and the management of  business applications. In contrast to the traditional approach, an integrated agile business application management  is a continual process, focused on engaging  IT Staff and customers  throughout the organization in the designing, in the testing, in the choice of  the business applications line and it models. This helps IT department, CIO, business application manager, IT system engineer etc. to understand well and quickly the scope of the customers’ business requirements.....

…exploiting   the  feedbacks, visions etc. of your customers effective  and learning from the past experiences

Continual testing, lots of analysis, enormous passion, innovation and collaboration during the decisions, designing, deployment, supporting and upgrading etc. of the business applications, and particularly the continual feedback of your customers with regards to the performance of your business applications enabling your company to realize its true potential in a dynamic business applications environment.......

…supporting dynamic and challenge environment with effective collaborations

Sure, we have resistance to certain things while discussion with applications users group who have or  do not have enough experience. This is a great challenge. I think that  this is a great  positive challenge one. You as product Owner or application manager can usually give your points  for why you think it's good, and hear the customers  points for why they think it is bad, and come to some common grounds. This challenge is good for focus and perspective and does not mean changing the collaboration with team and customers. Sometimes your applications users group could change your point of view  so that you could  make the best choice......

 …your customers’ feedbacks enable you to make a good decision

Listing to those you are supposed to help and to work with  is a great art. Collaboration isn’t just about producing a lot of things quickly. It’s about listening to direct and indirect sources of feedback of external and internal customers to learn how your business applications requirements, testings, initiatives, deployment and support etc. are performing, and then using rapid  feedbacks and interactions to adjust and improve accordingly. Customers’ feedbacks are the best metrics to measure the performance and the status of your business applications management environment…

….encouraging transparency of IT costs, benefits, and risks

An integrated agile business applications focuses on the business applications requirements through talking, discussion, testing etc. with the customers about things that the business needs and understands. This guarantees the optimal using of  your applications department resources....

….focus on your customers’ requirements, not your competition 

Integrating a well agile strategy within a chosen framework may make great sense to work effective with your customers on the basis of the required business case and see which software application corresponds well to it business case requirements. This means you need to work hand in hand with  your customers to make the best  choice of the software application that integrates and supports well it business requirements....

……engaging effective and transparent communication with yours  customers

Well documented customer’s perceptions, visions, requirements, negotiations, matters, satisfactions including listening, analysing, engagement, interaction and measurement are well integrated-resources to build successfully application management strategy. This could be reached through a well-integrated agile approach, communication and collaboration process…


The choice and the combination of the framework (traditional management/evaluation models, COBIT, ITIL, Prince2, PMP, ISO/IEC, Scrum, waterfall model etc.) depends on your business applications strategies, business requirements, the actual environment and stage of your business applications management, and the choice of each manager and the organizational management strategies.

Frameworks provide guidelines for designing your business applications. Framework and processes do not guarantee the success of your business applications management strategy.  En tout cas,

People are the most important factor, both internally and externally, when driving business applications innovation within a company. Human factors, particularly your customers´ perceptions, feedbacks, requirements and visions must be carefully taken into account if you want to build a successful business application management strategy.......

You may also be interested in the following  papers - Agile in sustainable development arena:

1. Évaluation agile: la vie privée et sociale des plus pauvres comme des indicateurs pertinents dans les processus d´évaluation des projets et programmes de développement durable
2. Why operate agile in sustainable development programmes and projects?
3. Évaluation Agile et les Objectifs du Millénaire pour le Développement
4. Agile knowledge Package Quality Policy: It is the Right Delivery and the Real-Time Access to the Knowledge for Development!
5. La coopération agile au développement
6.  La gouvernance des Partenariats Public-Privé (PPP), la gestion des ressources locales et aides au développement en Afrique
7. DevOps - development and operations

Author, Amouzou Bedi, sample paper, contact on LinkedIn. I will try to update this paper on a regular basis if  a need arises. Please if you have a suggestion and feedback with regards to this paper, please feel free to contact me. 


[AGILE, URL] Agile Manifesto
[Amouzou Bedi] La coopération agile au développement, book french édition
[Appelo 2011] What Is Agile Management?
From Jurgen Appelo, 10. Februar 2011
About being a manager in an Agile organization
Photos: Agile in a Flash: Basic Agile Flow


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