Agile methods aren’t just for software anymore. Actually they haven’t been just for software for quite a while now. That said, the types of companies, and the types of industries, that are exploring team-based, collaborative, iterative and incremental approaches to do their work is rather breath-taking. Agile is truly going mainstream. The question at hand is can we apply team-based agile straight out of the box in a non-software context? Can we take our scaled agile approaches and apply them without modification? My experience is that most of the principles and patterns apply, sometimes the practices and frameworks need modification for a particular context.
This talk is going to explore two case studies… one with an international hotel chain going through a major rebranding initiative and another, a well-known fast food restaurant looking to optimize their kitchen production capacity. Two totally different companies, two totally different industries, both trying to use agile to solve their problems. We’ll look at the challenges each faced, what they had in common, and the patterns, tools, and techniques they are using to solve them. We’ll extract some common themes and test them for general applicability to other non-software domains. The talk will close with what might be a new way of applying agile outside of a software context.