Case for Agile Process Management

When designing processes, we are accustomed to the Six Sigma methodology and its stated DMAIC model – that is primarily composed of the following major stages: Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, Control.

The DMAIC approach is equivalent to the Waterfall model of Systems Development, where they have phases that comprise of: Requirements, Design, Develop, Test and Deploy.

The Systems Development methodologies have long transitioned from the Waterfall approach to a more versatile Agile approach. Time-to-market a product launch is shorter in the Agile approach, and one can use live feedback mechanisms to continuously improve product capabilities as the market uses the products through its progressive elaboration.

A similar Agile in process improvement initiatives is long due. We can no longer use the DMAIC approach to define full end-to-end processes and expect to implement that to precision through a prolonged period of time – business just does not run that way.

Embracing the Agile Process Management requires a culture of continuous improvement – where an organization would detect a problem, identify a few root causes, fix those, test how things run and improve on additional business needs in increments. If we were to define the full scope of a process initiative and implement that in its entirety, then the elongated time needed to do this may miss the opportunity to address the business issue on time.

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Following are key steps one can consider to implement an Agile Process Management:

• Identify organizational strategy and goals

• Define the problem

• Conduct current state assessment

• Identify and prioritize root cause

• Define Future State to Eliminate SOME of the root causes

• Implement Future State for the highest prioritized root causes

• Track the Problem / Identify additional root causes – Go Back to Step 1 

To learn more about how you can leverage the benefits of Agile Process Management in your organizations, contact: