Lean/Agile KPIs for Large Enterprise Systems (Part 1)

As Enterprises grow from small teams to projects, programs to portfolios, sustaining the “agility” among teams , LOB, Verticals becomes challenging. What is required is a combination of Agile and lean to improve agility for scaling such agile systems. But at the forefront are the metrics which are critical for any successful agile implementation at scale. Unless you measure it , you cannot control it. This post discusses metrics to measure business agility in terms of Predictability, Reliability, Adaptability and Productivity with adherence to Lean and Agile principles.

Adaptability : The goal of adaptability is to continually improve “Delivery” through adjusting asap to different conditions ie cost, schedule, scope and resources changes. If a project is filled with dependencies and heavy processes, and if cost of change is high, it will be difficult for team to adapt to different situations. Per the agile principles , teams need to self-organize to identify inefficiencies and optimize their process. These must be discussed in their teams retrospectives and should be added to their to — do list for the upcoming sprints and releases. But there are metrics that could be used to measure this adaptability, check the following metrics :

1) OKR, 2 ) Time to Market and 3) Qualitative Prototyping

1) OKR : The first metric for adaptability is OKR. Let’s check what is this OKRs. The OKR framework is a method in which organisations can break down their goals into smaller sub-goals and translate these sub-goals into measurable short term actions. Below is how you go about it. Let’s check some Objectives and their Key Results.

Objective: Objective is the goal the team is trying to achieve. Clearly ‘formulated’. ‘Ambitious’ and ‘focused’.

Key Results: What this means is a measurable actions that bring teams closer to this goal. A Key Result is ‘measurable’ when someone can objectively determine whether or not a goal has been achieved.

Lets check an example :

Objective: Consistently provide a positive customer support experience to all users.

Key Result: Shortening the average internal response time to requests by 50%

The above means that through OKR, the organisation is getting close to managing the ability to the environment that they work on. The message is that with adaptability , the teams/orgs benefit from measurability and gain a firm grip on progress. Continuously building adaptability, and a OKR driven work culture go hand in hand in managing this KPI.

Check more in the following article:

2)Time to Market : If being agile is the goal, it is crucial to quickly ‘Go Live’ with new solutions. The ability to continuously deliver these improvements to users is essential. This requires an increased amount of organising, both in terms of Product/Operation management and improved technical infrastructure. Constantly shortening the time-to-market is a critical success factor that can be measured by:

  • Release cycle: # releases per period (eg. quarterly) or # weeks from time of validation of a new idea to the first actual release
  • Autonomy: % of the teams that can make end-to-end adjustments to products without depending on another team.

3) Qualitative Prototyping : This is used to envision and explore new ideas, often prior to writing specifications for new products. Use A/B testing and Focused User Groups for evaluating the new idea/product. For Example , the eCommerce sites uses Focused User Groups flags or configurations and introduce features for the group to test and realise value before introducing to all users or regions

to be continued



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Kumar Anil