Agile and Lean

Is Agile a part of Lean?

August 10, 2022 14:00 PM

Agile and Lean

It's expensive to waste! It's when you pay someone to do any work, pay for equipment that isn't needed or pay for team members to solve an issue that could be avoided. Lean agile seeks to eliminate the wasteful use of resources and tasks to achieve greater efficiency and less expense without sacrificing quality. Lean agile is a priority to bring value to the client in every decision taken.

Lean agile can be described as a process that allows teams to identify areas of waste and improve processes. It's a mindset that improves effectiveness, efficiency, and continual improvement.

Take a look at this: You do better work when your desk isn't overflowing with things that you don't need. When you get rid of clutter and distractions the result is a well-organized workspace and workflow. This lets you concentrate on the most important things to work on efficiently and effectively.

In this section, you'll find out more about the process of developing lean, the advantages of Agile and Lean, as well as the five principles that define lean.

The process of developing lean and agile

Lean Agility, also known as Lean Software Development, comes from the concepts of lean manufacturing. Lean manufacturing was introduced into the manufacturing industry to boost profit margins by decreasing costs instead of just relying on increased sales. If a business can reduce waste and improve its efficiency, it will save money, which can increase profits overall.

Lean agile refers to an agile approach that, in the simplest terms, has a simple goal of improvement in efficiency through eliminating waste. Contrary to traditional waterfall project management, which imposes the plan that is laid out by a project director, lean agile aims to cut down on the number of tasks and tasks that do not provide worth. This ensures that every person involved in a particular project or Agile Development is productive and efficient.

If you're interested in diving into the past of Agile vs. Lean, the Lean Enterprise Institute Inc. was founded in the year 1997 by James P. Womack, Ph.D., and is a renowned source for lean methodologies. Its goal is to help individuals and teams improve their performance by implementing lean thinking and practices.

Lean methods are well-known because they can be used in conjunction with other agile methodologies and methods for software development. Lean Agile is a simple method for scaling Agile, which can be challenging for larger or expanding businesses.

The five lean and agile principles

The five essential concepts to implement lean methods are:

ValueValue streamFlowPerfection

These principles outline the five steps to guide the application of lean methods for manufacturing, teams for software development, and other agile-based industries.

Identify value

The first step is to put yourself in the shoes of the client. Value is the thing that the customer requires and expects from a particular product or project.

Think about it from the customer's perspective. Are they expecting anything? What will they spend money on? What are their needs to be met?

Sometimes, customers might not know the exact requirements they're seeking, especially when it's a brand-new technology or product that they're not familiar with.

In any event, the project can't proceed without clearly knowing what is required to ensure customer satisfaction. It is essential to determine the ultimate objective (value) the customers want to attain with your item or service.

The value of the stream is mapped to the map

The next step is to visualize all the steps and procedures that will be required to get the product from its inception to the point of delivery. By making every step visible and constantly keeping the purpose in the forefront, it's easy to determine which processes aren't directly contributing to the continuous delivery. If unproductive steps are discovered, the team identifies ways to eliminate them or minimize them as much as possible.

Eliminating waste will ensure that your company doesn't spend unnecessary funds on processes and steps that aren't adding value. Most importantly, the client gets exactly what they're looking to get.

Create flow

After the waste has been eliminated from the stream that creates value, then the following step involves ensuring that all the other processes run efficiently and effectively, meaning that there aren't any delays, interruptions, or bottlenecks. It is crucial for the steps that add value to operate in precise order to ensure that the product moves smoothly towards the client.

To be able to realize this type of lean agility, companies must educate the employees they employ to become agile and multi-skilled. They must also create cross-functional teams, dissect and reconfigure processes in the production process, and manage the employee workload.

Establish a pull system

With improved flow, your team will be able to provide services and products faster. Pull systems allow "just-in-time" manufacture and deliveries, which reduces inventory and work-in-progress (WIP) items by only manufacturing enough items to meet customer requirements.

With an automated pull system, you develop services and products as you need them instead of developing them beforehand and resulting in increasing inventory or a task list that needs to be stored and monitored and draining your profits.

Seek perfection

At least for the moment, when you complete the four steps, the waste will be eliminated. However, the job isn't completed. There's always a process that can be improved, and there are always stages in project and product development that take up time and money or fail to provide the desired results. This is why the fifth step to seeking perfection is crucial.

Lean can take time to adopt and implementing the process only once isn't enough. Create a mindset of continuous improvement within your corporate culture and don't give up on just the old.

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