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What is Inspect and Adapt in SAFe Framework and How does it Work?

Agile teams believe in continuous feedback system. In every iteration, feedback comes in multiple ways

  1. Product Feedback is received through iteration review at the end of every iteration
  2. Iteration retrospective to look back and improve in terms of people and process

This helps the team to continuously improve and become a much better product and product team. However, in a Scaled Agile environment, there are multiple teams working on a single product. Its equally important for the program (or Agile Release Train) to get into a feedback system.

There are many methods, events, and principles that are incorporated with SAFe, and most of them are being used in the product development on a large scale. One thing that is still needed to get a spot is the concept of Inspect and Adapt (I&A). 

In Scaled Agile, Inspect & Adapt is the way to look back and take feedback on product, process, people etc. Like how Iteration Review and Retrospective happens at the end of the iteration, Inspect & Adapt happens at the end of the Program Increment, is also called as PI.

Not only you are going to learn all about this concept, but we are going to let you know about SAFe Agile certification that will help you open various doors for your bright career. So let us begin by diving deep and getting to know I&A more.

What is Inspect and Adapt in SAFe?

It is known as one of the significant events that will happen at the end of each Program Increment (PI). The PI mentioned here generally consists of 8-12 weeks. During this period, the Agile Release Train delivers incremental value to the customer which is the fully working systems built in the last 1 PI.

The current state of the product along with the process which was used to get to that position is being discussed during the I&A event which happens at the end of every Program Increment (PI).

With this event, it can be made sure that the upcoming PI is going to be better and more efficient. Inspecting and putting efforts into improving the product as well as the process will help in getting there. The event is attended by the stakeholders as well and they help in providing the inputs that are added to the backlog of the next PI planning.

In the SAFe Agilist training, you will be able to learn more about PI and how to calculate the metrics as well.

How does this Work?

Inspect & Adapt consists of 3 parts

  1. The PI system Demo
  2. Quantitative & Qualitative Measurement
  3. Retrospective and problem solving workshop

The PI System Demo

The first part of I&A is the PI System Demo. As the name suggests, the ART would showcase the current system that was built in the last 1 PI. This will cover a larger set of people in the event so that this information is available to all. This includes all the key stakeholders from Portfolio, Customers to attend the demo.

This is to demonstrate the solution that was built the entire ART during this PI. This event is time-boxed to 1 hour. The focus of this event is all about product demo.

At the end of the PI system demo, Business Owners connect with each team and rate their team’s PI objectives by providing actual business value.

image 16
ref: Scaled Agile

Quantitative & Qualitative Measurements

This is another 60-minute session where quantitative, as well as qualitative measures, are being taken to evaluate the products and processes that are part of ART. In this event, 

Program / ART level metrics are displayed to the entire audience. One of the primary measures displayed is “Program Predictability Measure”. Each team’s predictability based on business value delivery is measured and then the overall program predictability is consolidated, like it is depicted in the below picture.

image 17

ART can also measure few qualitative measures like agile assessments, product delivery assessments, role specific assessments etc.

Retrospective 

The teams come together and addresses the issues that need to be put on the table during the problem-solving workshop. From the issues that they have identified in different teams, they will choose the top few issues for the problem-solving workshop.

Teams can use any of the retrospective techniques to conduct this retrospective to identify their issues.

Problem-Solving Workshop

ART comes together and conducts this workshop to identify 1-2 key problems, find root causes and find solutions for the root causes. This is a six-step process.

image 18

The whole process takes approximately 4 hours for the entire ART. Let’s quickly look at each step.

  1. Agree on the problem to solve

A well stated problem is half-problem solved. Hence, it is critical to identify and state the problem clearly. A well-stated problem addresses “What?”, “Where?”, “When?” and “Impact”.

  1. Apply root-cause analysis

Once the problem is well-stated, team gets into identifying the root causes for the problem, in – process, people, tools, program and environment. 

  1. Identify the biggest root cause

There can be multiple root causes for a specific problem identified. Its not humanly possible to fix all the root causes, hence its important to identify the biggest root cause. This is done using Pareto analysis tool.

  1. Restate the new problem

This step is to restate the problem with the biggest root cause identified.

  1. Brainstorm solutions

Identifying some potential solutions is the objective in this step. Here are few rules for applying brainstorming

  • Come up with as many ideas as possible
  • All ideas are welcome
  • Combine / merge ideas
  1. Create Improvement backlog items

The last step is to identify 1-2 solutions that can be implemented in the next PI itself.
RTE facilitates the entire I&A event. 

Why is Inspect &Adapt an Important Event?

I&A should be done in every PI, because this is a great opportunity to get the feedback on the product, people and process. It helps the entire ART to continuously improve in every PI.

Conclusion

Adopting lean-agile thinking and practices takes time and will involve a lot of best approaches to achieve. To incorporate lean-agile thinking to make decisions, the use of SAFe Inspect and Adapt becomes very crucial. This allows the business to make sure that the products, as well as processes, are going on the right track.

This will strengthen that Agile Release Train and make sure that proper guidelines of a SAFe framework are being practiced. This will push the teams to give their best in the product development. With the best SAFe Certification training from LeanWisdom, you can ensure that you are getting trained by the best professionals in the industry.

Not only it will open a plethora of doors of opportunities for you, but prepare you for the challenges that you need to face while climbing up the ladder of success in this field. So choose the right platform for your bright career and get started.

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