SAFe Implementation Roadmap Part 8: Launch more ARTs and value streams

In this blog series, we take a quick look at each of the 12 steps in the SAFe Implementation Roadmap. Previously, we discussed Coaching the Agile Release Train Execution. Today we will discuss how to launch more ARTs and Value Streams for larger organizations.

The train has left the station. It’s now time to accelerate. At this point, you have already launched one ART, and your teams are completely trained. You have also created your implementation plan. Everyone has agreed to this new way of working, and all teams are empowered to plan their future work and value added. All the preparation now comes to action.

The Lean-Agile Center of Excellence (LACE) and SAFe Program Consultants (SPCs) have already launched the first ART. This ART has provided the team with measurable benefits that the teams can now carry to other ARTs. The first Program Increment (PI) deliverables have demonstrated the benefits of SAFe further. By launching more ARTs, the business will accelerate their benefits of faster time to market, higher quality, higher productivity, and increased employee engagement. We take a deeper look at this acceleration in the following sections.

More ARTs

The team can carry the success of the first ART launch to the next ones. What went well during the first ART launch? Keep doing that. What didn’t go so well? Make sure you improve on those points. Look back at the following articles to carry out your next ART launches:

Just because the teams within the next ARTs are trained and coached thoroughly doesn’t mean they are completely ready to operate alone. The team needs to use the same attention to detail that they did to launch the first ART. It is unlikely that the new agile teams know exactly how to do everything already.

Large Solution Roles, Artifacts, and Events

It might be the case that one ART covers your entire value stream. The teams within that ART have the skills, cross-functional ability, people, and resources required to add Release on Demand in the Value Stream. Some larger value streams will need additional ARTs. If the latter is the case, there are more complex roles, artifacts, and events to cover.

The below image will help you understand the new roles, artifacts, and events that must realize essential SAFe in a more complex Value Stream.

Large Solution SAFe

Image courtesy of https://www.scaledagileframework.com/

Since we are now taking the SAFe framework to the enterprise level, the SPCs, leaders, and LACE will all need to play an active role in helping the following activities:

  • Establish roles - We need to fill three roles required for large solutions - Solution Train Engineer, Solution Management, and Solution Architect/Engineering.
  • Establish Solution Intent - We need to determine the responsibilities, tools, processes, and solution intent.
  • Establish a large solution Vision, Roadmap, and Metrics -There could be a few other elements involved in large value streams. These could include vision, roadmap, metrics, Shared Services, System Team, DevOps strategies, Lean User Experience, Milestones, and releases.
  • Introduce Capabilities and the Solution Backlog - The SPCs should introduce a capabilities backlog item along with a Solution Kanban.
  • Implementing Pre- and Post-PI Planning, Solution Demo, and large solution Inspect and Adapt - Respectively, these events are required for ART planning, following up and coordinating Solution Objectives after planning, and demonstrating the solution improvements to business stakeholders.
  • Integrating Suppliers - Whether internal or external, the SPCs and LACE are responsible for training and integrating these teams into the new way of working.

The above list is taken from the SAFe website and reworded to add our own spin on the activities. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.

More Value Streams

Implementing our first value stream is a major accomplishment, and for many, this is the end of the road. For large enterprise organizations, on the other hand, we are far from done. Whether you are finished implementing value streams or have more to go, getting the first one done is a major accomplishment.

If your organization falls into the larger bucket, you will know because you have already identified other value streams that might serve other business areas or deliver values and solutions that are unrelated to your first. The teams responsible for these value streams could also be located in a different office or location.

You and your team will need to separately address each of the new value streams, starting from “Identify Value Streams and ARTs” in the implementation roadmap. This might seem tedious or excessive, but it is common to hear resistance from other departments or parts of the organization. They might think, “it worked for team x, but this won’t work for us.” To get them on board, be sure to address each value stream thoroughly with the implementation roadmap.

Conclusion

All in all, if your preparation work and initial ART launch is successful, the repetitive steps of launching other ARTs and value streams should be fairly straightforward. While every team is slightly different, the principles of SAfe do not differ much on a team by team basis.


Don't miss out on the previous parts of the SAFe Implementation Roadmap series!

Part 1: Getting started and reaching the tipping point
Part 2: Train lean-agile change agents
Part 3: Identify Value Streams and Agile Release Trains
Part 4: Create the implementation plan
Part 5: Prepare for ART launch
Part 6: Train teams and launch the ART
Part 7: Coach ART execution


The best journeys are taken together. Let us accompany you on your SAFe journey every step of the way.

We know that a SAFe implementation can seem daunting, but it doesn't have to be with the right tools and the right partner. So whether you're about to take your first steps or ready to scale up, we will be there to help you evaluate and guide you through the process. Together with Germany's leading SAFe partner, Kegon, we will use our expertise in Agile Hive, Jira, and Jira Align to help you find the right methods and tools to fit your needs wherever you are on your SAFe journey.

Get in touch with us today to help get you started the best way possible for your organization.


Further Reading

Agile Hive Implementation Project
Scaled Agile: SAFe 5.0 changes and how Agile Hive maps them
SAFe with Atlassian tools: Agile Hive is a Scaled Agile Platform Partner
SAFe resources to get you started right
Agile Hive: What is SAFe®?