Public defence in Computer Science, M.Sc. Abheeshta Putta

Adopting Agile Methods in large-scale Organizations
Doctoral theses hanging on the wall

Title of the doctoral thesis: Adopting Agile Methods in Large-scale Organizations using Scaling Frameworks

Opponent: Associate Professor Xiaofeng Wang, Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, Italy
Custos: Professor Casper Lassenius, Aalto University School of Science, Department of Computer Science

The public defence will be organised on campus.

The thesis is publicly displayed 10 days before the defence in the publication archive Aaltodoc of Aalto University. 

Electronic thesis

Public defence announcement:

Agile methods are popular in software industry since 2000. Agile practices are suitable for small teams and bought several benefits, e.g. productivity, time-to-market to the software organizations which have adopted these methods. These benefits created an interest among the software practitioners to adopt agile in large-scale organizations as well. However, the adoption of agile practices and principles is challenging as it requires change of traditional mindset to an agile mindset, coordination and collaboration mechanisms are difficult with large number of teams. To support the scaling of agile methods to large-scale organizations, several scaling frameworks, e.g. Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe), Large-Scale Scrum (LeSS), Spotify, were designed in the recent past. Out of all the frameworks, SAFe has been and continues to be the most popular framework. However, in-spite the popularity of SAFe also other frameworks, there is very little evidence on how they adopted in the software industry.

In our research, we aimed to understand the usage of scaling frameworks in practice. In our research, we understood that scaling frameworks are adopted to deal with the pain points or challenges (e.g. coordinating large teams) in the organization and also to improve their current state of the organization (e.g. improve the productivity, efficiency). Organizations also received several business and organizational benefits like improved time-to-market and collaboration. There were also several challenges such as change resistance, forming teams of teams, and inculcating an agile mindset. We also had some specific findings for SAFe, like it was adopted as it was popular, well-defined and provided guidance for the transformation. There were some specific challenges such as identifying the value streams, forming of Agile Release Trains (ARTs), organizing the Program Increment planning (PIs). Companies transform to SAFe using a top-down approach and step-wise. The transformation to SAFe typically follows the roadmap from their official website. Our research helps software organizations by providing insights on why frameworks are used, transformation process, benefits and challenges of their usage. Such information helps them to choose a suitable framework and guide the large scale transformation processes.

Contact details of the doctoral student: [email protected], 0505749680

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