Build Scale with Strength: Creating an Agile Program Management Powerhouse (part 1)

Posted by Steve Elliott on Sep 26, 2018 1:15:00 PM

At AgileCraft, we are driven to expose and enable what’s truly important to running successful programs and release trains.  We leverage our extensive experience collaborating with customers as they transform their companies to uncover unique insight into the best way to work, day to day, on programs, release trains and PIs. What we’ve discovered is that program managers and RTEs are the soul of servant-leadership on scaled agile teams. They need to have top-to-bottom transparency and insights into all aspects of their programs and release trains. This can only be accomplished when all the elements of the program and associated data can be intelligently connected through tooling.

This got me to thinking about my grandpa’s workshop, which my grandma jokingly called the Powerhouse (on account of his need to own every type of power tool on the planet). He loved to tinker; taking machines apart and putting them back together, always making them work a little bit better each time. Everything he needed was in this shop, filled with tools that were carefully and optimally organized into various toolboxes, reflecting the way he liked to get his work done based on his many years of experience as a farmer, engineer and entrepreneur. Mindful of his efficiency, he could simply sit at his bench with his project of the day and start working away without delay, because he could count on the right tool for the job being exactly where he needed it to be.

The AgileCraft platform is built in a very similar way. Based on plenty of challenges, successes, failures, learnings and iterations over thousands of hours with our customers and partners, we’ve created a powerhouse that has everything the PM and RTE needs in order to keep programs and release trains moving. Following the model of a well-organized workshop, all the tools needed for successful agile management are available and optimized for tackling the key activities involved in programs and release trains. 

A robust agile program management powerhouse should have four key toolboxes:

  • An overview of unified key program information, such as feature progress, objectives, dependencies, and risks in a configurable, at-a-glance format.
  • A real-time information radiator focusing on the current PI by sprint and team with the ability to drill down into detail on any object and start removing impediments before they impact delivery.
  • Real-time, up-to-date, confidently accurate reports to measure, forecast and communicate program and release train heath and progress data.
  • A proactive set of inspect and adapt activities that are conducted, recorded, actioned and driven to resolution with measured results.


With this in mind, our team created a set of program management powerhouse tools within the AgileCraft platform. Next week, I'll delve into the way AgileCraft has configured these toolboxes for scaled agile teams, and makes program management as organized and intuitive as working in my grandpa's workshop. In the meantime, stop by our website to learn more about agile program management at scale

Topics: Digital transformation, lean agile, enterprise agile, agile at scale, program management