Agile Process … What?! Is That an Oxymoron?

To survive in today’s competitive business climate organization’s must respond quickly to their customers’ evolving needs and desires.  How many times have you heard that? We know from experience that an agile culture where agility is gained through people, process and tools can enable organizations to gain market share and competitive advantage.  And still, more organizations than not silo agile principles to software and product development. Ever wonder why, as an industry, we are not getting the types of returns that are expected from our efforts?

Agile software development alone will not get us there!  Other factors include:
  • Ability to quickly respond to customer feedback and needs – Customer engagement.
  • An understanding that the customer and business requirements are dynamic and that we must have agile processes in place to respond to them. (Not only agile development)
  • Sustained innovation and speed from idea to end of life for the service and processes.
  • Increased employee engagement, creativity and profitability and talent retention. This could include the support of DevOps, Agile Service Management and Agile Process Owner training and education.
  • New behaviors that are encouraged through experimentation and learning in Development, in Test, in Release and most importantly in Service Operation.
  • Making smaller incremental changes to processes as well as services.
  • A keen pulse on the cadence of demand and having processes in place to meet it. 
  • Agile Process Owners that are skilled enough to ensure incremental improvements that keep service management lean and adaptive.
Agile Service Management throughout the value stream is the only way that organizations will truly be able to achieve the level of agility and value that is required.  In order to obtain this, we must educate and inspire staff, managers and process owners.  Without agile processes that support the activities it will be difficult to streamline and also very difficult to automate. What if we were to have agile software development and then at the same time have overburdened, bureaucratic, change management and other ITSM processes?  What could we gain?  More importantly, how much is that costing?  

A process owner is the individual accountable for the performance of a process and for ensuring the process delivers value to its stakeholders.  Process owners manage the requirements of process stakeholders, translate those requirements into process performance objectives and oversee the entire process design and improvement lifecycle. We need agile people and must have agile processes to support customer and business dynamic requirements.  

It is becoming more apparent every day that we simply cannot silo “Agility”.  Having “Agile Process” is not an oxymoron.  In many cases Agile Service Management with agile process is the missing element in our formula for success.

To learn more about Agile Service Management or to obtain Certified Agile Process Owner information and certification:


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