Companies can keep on track for an agile future with EN4M™ apm. Global competition, digitalisation, wider product variety, and faster times to market are just some of the factors which are continually raising the bar for companies. To cope with the increasing pressure, organisations must change and become agile organisations.
Agile Management is not only a project management method, but also concerns the leadership principle and the organisational structure. Thus agility is not to be regarded as a trend that can be speedily implemented in a company. Rather a wholeheartedly engaged approach is required, one which involves long-term consequences and an implementation strategy.
The EN4M™ apm package from Encom provides a flexible and scalable software solution to introduce and establish an agile management that meets your organisation’s needs.
Agility involves an iterative approach, lateral leadership, and the involvement of the client right from the start, so that continual feedback and immediate transfer of learning are integral to the process. Progress is made in each iteration, any required adjustments are defined, and the process is continually improved in the light of Lessons Learned.
The general impact on organisational structure is that organisations with hierarchical structures develop in a direction toward networked structures - on a basis of trust, transparency, positive culture of error management, as well as disciplined and passionate personal responsibility.
Current studies support the use of agile methods. These studies include for example the GPM (German Association for project management) “Status Quo Agile - Dissemination and Use of Agile Methods” with over 600 participants from more than 20 countries. The main results are:
EN4M™ apm focuses on outcomes, and facilitates companies through a safe changeover from classical to agile management methods in 3 steps.
Agile methods are increasingly being integrated into classical management methods. This can lead to a so-called “hybrid approach”, where it’s not necessary for every team in the project to operate in an agile manner. For this reason EN4M™ apm also provides all the methods and tools that are employed in conventional project management. This includes for example risk management, scheduling with GANTT, task management, resource planning, document management, etc.
EN4M™ apm is a scalable system that can smooth out a suitable transformation path for your company to agile programme management and agile project management. And it does so in a manner that suits your plans and capabilities so that you attain the level of agility that’s right for your company.
It is rare in a company for there to be only one planning context or only one perspective. Selected planning structures can, as needed, be represented and networked (for example, project, area of expertise, topic, gateways). Thus it is possible for each specialist area to have an individual planning structure, even though a standardised agile planning and review process is set up across the company. Each perspective has an associated backlog which is automatically filled with the relevant results.
In order to achieve a standardisation of the process model, key-users can define PMO Execution Models as templates for different project types, including the associated gateways and milestones. The outcomes to be delivered for the project are assigned to the relevant gateways and automatically receive the latest possible deadline. Delivery deadlines are adjusted in the course of Sprint planning and prioritisation.
The outcomes form a basis for planning in a standardised and context-sensitive way. Coarse-grain planning which facilitates an objective assessment of the successful outcomes is done on the basis of the customer-is-champion principle. This planning covers, for example, delivery deadlines, acceptance criteria, or other agreements. Those with responsibility for outcomes can, where needed, carry out a detailed planning on the basis of Timing Charts or activities. This planning is optional and is not relevant to communication with the customer. The planning can also of course take place in the context of a Sprint, which entails a corresponding Sprint backlog.
In order to keep in mind possible conflicts arising from changes in status of individual outcomes, dependencies between outcomes can be defined. Local dependencies give rise to a dynamic cross-divisional value-adding network which grows dynamically by additional dependencies detected over the course of planning. Conflicts can thereby be detected and analysed globally, and not solely locally.
Your staff’s knowledge constitutes a significant competitive edge for your company. EN4M™ apm provides several ways to secure this and to keep it available in future planning, For example you can store your standard templates in a Knowledge Base for all relevant elements of your planning. These can be execution models, planning structures, project backlogs and product backlogs, and also processes. These templates not only preserve valuable knowledge from all areas of the company, but also help accelerate the planning process and lead to a higher level of standardisation. A well-regulated Lesson Learned and Retrospective Process ensures that ongoing knowledge growth is reflected in the Knowledge Base and remains available for the future.
Professional review-management gives your project preventative security. Regular retrospective consideration continually improves outcomes.
The elements of the Execution Models (phases, gateways, milestones) are depicted on an interactive timeline. The status and conflict information calculated are depicted for the individual elements and can be evaluated. The associated relevant deliverables, activities, risks, and other data can be displayed and processed by the selection of one or more elements. All planned review deadlines are also visualised in a matching calendar representation. By selecting a deadline, all deliverables and activities relevant to the review are displayed and can be processed.
This shifts the user’s focus from the planning details to calculated conflicts for the current scope (gateway). The impact of existing conflicts on the Execution Model as a whole can be calculated from the system.
In an agile process it is necessary to measure and assess the outcomes and/or achievement of objectives at regular intervals. The main aim of this is to detect problems and risks that can be averted. A retrospective consideration follows the review. The findings are assessed and used to create measures to improve the process and collaboration. In this way process quality and thus efficiency are continually improved. Each review meeting can be documented with the standardised Meeting Management and agreed measures can be fully tracked.
Product development often takes place over an extended period of time with fixed series production starting date (SOP). Then efforts are made to incorporate new or changed requirements right up to the last moment. In the agile methodology, the content is continually re-interrogated and prioritised in the course of the iterative detailed planning, so that experience gained from reviews in conjunction with new knowledge or innovations (changes) can be taken into consideration.
Meetings are a fundamental part of planning and implementations of any sort. These can be kick-off meetings, project status meetings, review meetings, retrospective meetings, or even meetings of the line organisation. What is crucial is that any agreements, decisions and tasks decided upon during meetings are made clear and are documented. EN4M™ apm provides various options for professional Meeting Management. For example templates which prompt, for example, for an agenda, the participants, etc., can be defined for the different types of meeting. The use of templates leads to streamlining and standardisation in the planning and follow-up of meetings. In automated task management, agreed activities are automatically entered into the LOP lists of the respective employee. In a follow-up of meetings, the system indicates the status of any agreed tasks, either for a specific meeting or for all meetings that have taken place.