Last Thursday, we hosted our first-ever virtual consultant meeting. Sayeed Reza, Vice President, Data and Analytics Solution at Optum, Chuck Gallagher, Agile Coach at Maximus, Mihir Thakkar, Technical Lead at JPMC, shared their experience and knowledge on how agile is working in their remote environments during this pandemic. A huge thank you to everyone who joined us!
How is agile beneficial in times like these, and how can we improve the process while working remotely?
While working remotely can have its challenges, the panelist’s agreed that they were able to adapt quickly to it. Chuck stated that “agile is a mindset and culture.” Each team is going to be different, and identifying how your team works the best is going to improve the process of agile while working remotely. Many companies already have teams that are working in different countries, so they are used to the various tools that they have been using while remote.
Do you think there are benefits to working remotely in agile?
One benefit of working remotely in agile is that employees are working more productive hours. With less time being spent on commutes, it leaves more time for people to get work done during that time. While the panelist’s agreed that there is nothing better than face to face interaction, they noted that the collaboration during this time has not changed. Companies are still using this time to connect with one another and still ensure that they are putting the customer first.
Could you potentially see your team/department transitioning to 50/50 remote/onsite in the future?
The productively while working remotely is positive. The panelists agreed that this could be the way of the future. Companies are now being able to realize how much they are investing in office locations and everything that goes into them. There is no replacement for in-person collaboration, but companies can look at what percentage of work can be done at home versus in the office.
What do you look at first when building an agile team?
When building an agile team, Mihir stated that “you need to figure out your teams’ goals first.” Once the teams can establish their goals, it’s then easier to educate them on how to achieve those goals through this crisis. Also, Chuck motioned that for his teams, he wants them to figure out who they are as a person first, then they can come together as a team. Sayeed shared that when he first builds an agile team, he uses the mindset of having the customer first.
How is Agile working in your remote teams? While the panelist’s agreed that face to face communication and collaboration is best, they are still able to use agile to ensure they are putting the customer first in this situation. Agile is a mindset and culture of its own, and each team makes goals that work the best for them. If you were unable to join, you can view the full session here.