As software is eating the world (per Marc Andreesen), every company is a software company. This includes our client, a global Fortune 40 retailer. In order to remain an industry leader, the retail company needed a way to accelerate their releases with accurate, real-time project planning and reporting. While they'd been practicing Scaled Agile for two years, their current system of Excel spreadsheets no longer supported their needs and proved to be more time-consuming than it was empowering. Seeking expert help from Praecipio, the retail company required new tools and optimized processes to support their SAFe goals and become an agile enterprise.
Prior to our engagement, our client used disparate tools and disconnected processes to manage their Agile release trains. Teams would begin work in Excel, then move data into Jira, before finally exporting back to Excel for reporting purposes. They also managed capacity planning solely in Excel, Sharepoint, and Microsoft Office, which limited visibility, added countless resource hours to maintain, and still generated inaccurate. Their tools and processes were not built to scale, thus limiting their ability to manage or increase their number of releases.
With expertise in both Atlassian and Scaled Agile, we worked with the global retailer to realign how they used Jira and implemented Advanced Roadmaps for Jira (formerly Portfolio for Jira) to manage their releases. We created a project configuration in Jira that their teams could easily replicate, which reflected accurate workflow information and replaced the need for other legacy tools. By integrating Jira with Advanced Roadmaps, we provided our client with a better way to gather estimates from teams, communicate with the Portfolio Epic Owners, prioritize work, and plan Program Increments. This streamlined work and processes for the retailer's teams since they spent less time switching between different tools. This allowed them to focus more time on Program Increment goals. Once implementation and configuration were successfully completed, we provided training to team members in order to increase user adoption and provide support for how to leverage their technology.
By implementing Advanced Roadmaps and configuring Jira to reflect Scaled Agile best practices, our client successfully replaced spreadsheets with more agile ways of working. With Jira automatically updating Advanced Roadmaps with real-time, accurate data, management had better visibility into work, which allowed them to plan effectively, from Program Increments to capacity planning. Getting back the time previously spent updating data in spreadsheets and various systems, our client is able to focus on adding more release trains to their development practices. Providing the global retailer with the right tools and practices to meet their Scaled Agile goals, we helped the organization accelerate work, reduce costs, and maximize their technology ROI.