Enterprise Business Agility Maturity Survey

Some years ago, to be more precise in 2015, I had the opportunity to develop and implement an Agile Maturity Self-Assessment Survey.

The idea for developing this tool was driven by my strong belief in constant feedback, and it´s role in challenging the status quo that leads towards an improved and adaptive way of working.

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash.

Another reason for designing the self-assessment survey was driven by one of the organizations I was working with. Their strategic objective was to focus on continuous improvement by growing our ways of working. The framework for this approach was based on constant feedback collection, agreement of improvement actions, and measurement of the achieved impact.

Thus, a self-assessment tool was needed, to provide realistic data that would lead our focus efforts. Most importantly, the source of data needed to come from those doing the day to day work.

After finishing the model, this was also published Scrum Alliance community as well as on the Beyond Lean Agile blog space.

Since its date of publishing, the survey has received a lot of feedback, adding my own experience while using it with various teams and organisations. The main points of improvements suggested were around making the survey generic so that it can also apply to non-development functions, less focus on Scrum, and customization of questions for specific areas.

In other words, be able to use to assess and understand the agile maturity level across the entire organization.

All the accumulated information drove me to sit down and review what I have created a couple of years ago. For a comprehensive result, I have done more research in the industry and asked people from several different areas do the assessment and share their opinion. All this input and research helped me take this survey to the next level – “Enterprise Business Agility Maturity Assessment”.

The goal of this iteration is to perfect a tool that helps understand the agile maturity level without limiting this type of assessment only to development or tech areas. Our main purpose as “agilists” is to improve ways of working by understanding pain points, to agree and prioritise what is critical, and keep our focus on constant improvement. The best way of doing this is to assess how known and widespread is the agile mindset across the organization.

While this new version has successfully been tested on a small sample, it would be deployed on a larger scale next year (FY19). Once tested, I will be happy to share the lessons learned and any improvement identified.

Having all said that, you can find bellow\here the “Enterprise Business Agility Maturity Assessment”:

———- Survey starts here ———-

Intro

Thirst of knowledge, willingness to fail fast and learn faster and keep improving are just some of the characteristics which embody agility, a concept that lies at the basis of customer satisfaction through continuous delivery. The agile mindset of leadership is the starting point that allows for the full formation of a highly collaborative and high performing culture.

As opposed to traditional top-down decision making or to a directive management style, leaders of agile culture focus their efforts on vision, strategy, growing people and removing organizational impediments. These agile values create an environment that supports empowered teams, allowing the specialists on the field to make decisions while aligning with the leadership direction.

Purpose of the survey: Define how present and widespread is the agile mindset across [Company Name] and identify existing opportunities for improvement and potential challenges to start adopting/proceeding with the agile transformation.

Guide on how to complete the survey: The survey is divided into 6 sections each of them containing a series of questions with single or multiple-choice answers. Where required, please provide a rating while using the guidelines below. All questions refer to culture and ways of working used here, at [Company Name].

Ad-hoc agile:

  • The organization mostly follows traditional processes.
  • Agile is either not used or used inconsistently across the organization.

 Doing agile:

  • The organization is just getting started with business agility.
  • Starts to exhibit some consistent agile habits.
  • Knowledge sharing begins to occur across the organisation.
  • Agile tools and practices are common.

Being agile:

  • The business agility basics are in place and more advanced methods are being explored.
  • Most of the project portfolio is agile.
  • Role and responsibilities are consistent across organization.
  • Disciplined, repeatable process is in place with high-quality results.
  • Trust in people/people empowerment and continuous improvement is occurring.

Thinking agile:

  • The organization has made significant strides towards business agility.
  • Agile habits are at a high maturity across the organisation.
  • Successful use of agile at scale and across multiple geographies.
  • Measurements systems are in place to track value realisation.
  • Automation is highly enabled.

Culturally agile:

  • The organization is a global business agility leader.
  • Lean and agile are part of the organizational culture.
  • Perfecting waste reduction, lack of overburden and inefficiency, smooth flow of delivery.
  • There is a sustainable pace for innovation.
  • Continuous organizational learning and optimization of ways of working is in place.

Select your business area from the following list:

  • TBD by you – Specify your organisation areas so the person is able to select from the multiple-choice option.
  • Which one? (Text field)

Leadership & Culture

  1. Are you clear about our organisation’s mission, vision and values?
  • Yes
  • No
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. Could you please identify and select at least three of our values [Company Name]?
  • TBD by you – Specify your organisation values so the person is able to select from the multiple-choice option.
  1. Do you feel that the leadership is communicating clearly in a timely manner?

e.g. How would you rate the leadership communication strategy and frequency?

  • Very dissatisfying (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Dissatisfying (Doing agile)
  • Neutral (Being agile)
  • Satisfying (Thinking agile)
  • Very satisfying (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate the leadership focus in identifying trends and opportunities for improvement?

e.g. Identify improvement opportunities to adapt and respond to constant changes.

  • No interest in seeking opportunities for improvements (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Low interest in seeking opportunities for improvements (Doing agile)
  • Compliance and process driven annual surveys with a low impact action plan (Being agile)
  • Periodic identification of opportunities with small improvements implemented (Thinking agile)
  • Regular/Periodic identification of opportunities with visible improvements implemented (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate the leadership’s openness to listen and welcome people’s opinions?
  • Doesn’t tell us much at all about what’s going on (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Gives us only a limited amount of information (Doing agile)
  • Keeps us adequately informed (Being agile)
  • Keeps us fairly well informed (Thinking agile)
  • Keeps us fully informed (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate the level of communication and collaboration within your business area?
  • Poor – only important information is shared with no particular collaboration happening (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Fair – information is shared but collaboration is not encouraged (Doing agile)
  • Neutral – information is shared regularly and collaboration happens occasionally (Being agile)
  • Very good – information is shared regularly and collaboration is happening when there are dependencies (Thinking agile)
  • Excellent – information is shared for transparency and collaboration is happening every step of the way (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate your business areas’ communication and collaboration across the business?
  • Poor – only important information is shared with no particular collaboration happening (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Fair – information is shared but collaboration is not encouraged (Doing agile)
  • Neutral – information is shared regularly and collaboration happens occasionally (Being agile)
  • Very good – information is shared regularly and collaboration is happening when there are dependencies (Thinking agile)
  • Excellent – information is shared for transparency and collaboration is happening every step of the way (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate the organization’s approach in empowering people to take a certain level of decision and self-organized team level work?
  • No empowerment, people execute only what is cascaded from leadership (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Low-level empowerment only for work with small impact on strategic objectives (Doing agile)
  • Empowered to take major decisions and self-organize during occurred incidents (Being agile)
  • Empowered to take major decisions and self-organize business as usual work (Thinking agile)
  • Fully empowered, people have the power of decision and trust form management (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate the empowerment that you and your team have to try new things, without fear of blame?
  • No empowerment, the team executes only what is cascaded from leadership (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Low-level empowerment only for work with small impact on strategic objectives (Doing agile)
  • Empowered to take major decisions and self-organize during occurred incidents (Being agile)
  • Empowered to take major decisions and self-organize business as usual work (Thinking agile)
  • Fully empowered, a self-organizing team with trust from management (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate your leaders support (feedback, mentor, etc) in continuously growing the team and achieving established goals?
  • Unsupportive (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Fairly supportive (Doing agile)
  • Neutral (Being agile)
  • Supportive (Thinking agile)
  • Very supportive (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)

Lean Business & Portfolio Management

  1. How do you think people perceive [Company Name] in terms of agile culture?
  • Ad-hoc agile
  • Doing agile
  • Being agile
  • Thinking agile
  • Culturally agile
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate the efficiency of our customer’s interaction and communication?

e.g. Efficiency means: timely, frequent interactions, clear communication, specific guidelines.

  • Very dissatisfying (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Dissatisfying (Doing agile)
  • Neutral (Being agile)
  • Satisfying (Thinking agile)
  • Very satisfying (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you describe the organization ability to cascade and provide clarity around business objectives (strategies/desired outcomes) and specific roadmaps?

e.g. Is data/info communicated clearly, visible and using a single source of truth, etc?

  • Doesn’t properly cascades information nor does it provide clear objectives (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Occasionally cascades limited amount of information with basic clarifications (Doing agile)
  • Cascades most important business objectives and provides clarity on vital roadmaps (Being agile)
  • Cascades information on a periodic basis and ensures visibility on business all area road maps (Thinking agile)
  • Communicates transparently all strategic objectives and offers consistent support to business areas (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate our planning vs demand capacity?

e.g. It’s visual and clear to everyone how and where people are allocated?

  • Very dissatisfying (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Dissatisfying (Doing agile)
  • Neutral (Being agile)
  • Satisfying (Thinking agile)
  • Very satisfying (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate our lead time to deliver business value to our customers?
  • Very dissatisfying (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Dissatisfying (Doing agile)
  • Neutral (Being agile)
  • Satisfying (Thinking agile)
  • Very satisfying (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate your confidence in your team/business area achieving the current goals?

e.g. Do you feel that we are going in the right direction?

  • Strongly unconfident (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Unconfident (Doing agile)
  • Undecided (Being agile)
  • Confident (Thinking agile)
  • Strongly confident (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate your team/business area responsiveness to changes and new requirements?

e.g. Is your team/business area flexible enough that can manage incoming requests?

  • Resistant (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Reluctant (Doing agile)
  • Neutral (Being agile)
  • Embraces changes (Thinking agile)
  • Agile (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)

Organisational Structure

  1. What is your team size?
  • 1-3 members
  • 3-5 members
  • 5-7 members
  • More than 7 members
  1. How would you classify your team level of skills in delivering business requests?

e.g. Can the team deliver business value with a high level of quality?

  • Novice (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Intermediate (Doing agile)
  • Skilled (Being agile)
  • Superior (Thinking agile)
  • Proficient, driven by continuous development (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate your team/business area level of self-organisation?
  • Novice (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Intermediate (Doing agile)
  • Skilled (Being agile)
  • Self-organising (Thinking agile)
  • Proficient in self-organising (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate your team members’ ability to step outside their role and occupy different functions?
  • Ad-hoc agile
  • Doing agile
  • Being agile
  • Thinking agile
  • Culturally agile
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate your teams’ ability to shift people upon demand?
  • Ad-hoc agile
  • Doing agile
  • Being agile
  • Thinking agile
  • Culturally agile
  • Additional comments (Text field)

Agile Mindset & Methods

  1. How experienced are you with working in self-organised, empowered, trust-based teams with shared outcomes?
  • Novice (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Intermediate (Doing agile)
  • Skilled (Being agile)
  • Superior (Thinking agile)
  • Proficient, driven by continuous development (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate the level of trust within your team and business area?
  • Very dissatisfying (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Dissatisfying (Doing agile)
  • Neutral (Being agile)
  • Satisfying (Thinking agile)
  • Very satisfying (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. What is your experience in leading and facilitating people-centric self-organizing teams?
  • Novice (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Intermediate (Doing agile)
  • Skilled (Being agile)
  • Superior (Thinking agile)
  • Proficient, driven by continuous development (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you measure the level of opportunities to be creative and innovate?
  • Lacking (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Low (Doing agile)
  • Medium (Being agile)
  • High (Thinking agile)
  • Very high (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How satisfied are you with your leader or team facilitator abilities to manage and remove impediments blocking you and your teamwork?

e.g. Does the team feel that they are stuck with issues outside their control?

  • Very dissatisfied (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Dissatisfied (Doing agile)
  • Neutral (Being agile)
  • Satisfied (Thinking agile)
  • Very satisfied (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate your leader and/or team facilitator effectiveness in preparing, scheduling and facilitating agile ceremonies in an efficient and collaborative manner?
  • Very dissatisfying (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Dissatisfying (Doing agile)
  • Neutral (Being agile)
  • Satisfying (Thinking agile)
  • Very satisfying (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate the effectiveness of your team/business areas regular meetings?

e.g. Do you feel that they are valuable or a waste of time?

  • Very dissatisfying (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Dissatisfying (Doing agile)
  • Neutral (Being agile)
  • Satisfying (Thinking agile)
  • Very satisfying (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate your visibility on the upcoming plans (backlog) for the next weeks/months (sprints)?

e.g. Do you have a clear and prioritised backlog or just what you are currently working on?

  • Very dissatisfying (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Dissatisfying (Doing agile)
  • Neutral (Being agile)
  • Satisfying (Thinking agile)
  • Very satisfying (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate your team/business area skills to break down strategic deliverables to smaller, measurable business outcomes?
  • Novice (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Intermediate (Doing agile)
  • Skilled (Being agile)
  • Superior (Thinking agile)
  • Proficient (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate your team business analyst/product owner’s effectiveness in keeping the backlog and efficiently redefining and prioritising tasks?

Note: For corporate functions consider this role as the person organising the workload.

  • Ineffective (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Slightly effectiveness (Doing agile)
  • Average (Being agile)
  • Effective (Thinking agile)
  • Highly effective (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate your team business analyst/product owner’s engagement with the team and knowledge in answering questions?

e.g. Is he/she available to the team? Is he/she engaging with the other stakeholders, and getting their input?

Note: For corporate functions consider this role as the person organising the workload.

  • Novice (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Intermediate (Doing agile)
  • Skilled (Being agile)
  • Superior (Thinking agile)
  • Proficient, driven by continuous development (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How mature is your team in providing accurate estimations and planning for delivery?
  • Novice (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Intermediate (Doing agile)
  • Skilled (Being agile)
  • Superior (Thinking agile)
  • Proficient (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How familiar are you in applying agile planning/estimating approaches (trade-offs, prioritisation, relative estimation, release plans, etc.)?
  • Novice (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Intermediate (Doing agile)
  • Skilled (Being agile)
  • Superior (Thinking agile)
  • Proficient (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How often does the team receive fully detailed, ready to be implemented requests?
  • Rarely
  • Not very often
  • Neutral
  • Often
  • Very often
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. Does your team/business area have an agreed and clear definition of ready & done?
  • Yes
  • No
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate your team/business area maturity in identifying and improving how you work?
  • Novice (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Intermediate (Doing agile)
  • Skilled (Being agile)
  • Superior (Thinking agile)
  • Proficient, driven by continuous development (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. Does your team/business area follow any of the agile frameworks/systems described below?
  • No, we still follow a traditional approach
  • Scrum
  • Kanban
  • Scrumban
  • Hybrid
  • Other – Which one? (Text field)

Performance & Measurements

  1. Are planned goals achieved in due time by the team?
  • Never – 0 – 15% of the time (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Rarely -25% of the time (Doing agile)
  • Occasionally – 50% of the time (Being agile)
  • Most of the time – 80% of the time (Thinking agile)
  • Always – 100% of the time (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate your team/business area delivery pace?

e.g. Is your team delivering as fast as desired by your business analyst/product owner/costumer?

  • Unplanned pace (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Low pace (Doing agile)
  • Regular/Timed (Being agile)
  • High pace (Thinking agile)
  • Continuous /Seamless pace (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate your team predictability (target vs actuals) deliverables?

e.g. Is the team within 90% of your target consistently?

  • Highly unpredictable (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Unpredictable (Doing agile)
  • Neutral (Being agile)
  • Predictable (Thinking agile)
  • Highly predictable (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. Do you feel that our metrics (KPI’s) measure what matters (valued indicators)?
  • Yes
  • If no, why not? (Text field)
  1. Do you feel that our KPI’s are fully understandable and visible?
  • Yes
  • If no, why not? (Text field)
  1. Are our metrics (KPI’s) providing relevant insights and used as a source for continuous improvement?
  • Yes
  • If no, why not? (Text field)

Make It Stick & Sustain

Leading a Business Agility transformation takes planning, time and effort and often represents a large investment. For the change to provide lasting value, it is important to “make it stick” and avoid falling back into old patterns and behaviours.

  1. Do you understand your role and what is expected of you?
  • Yes
  • No
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. Do you understand the other roles and what is expected of them?
  • Yes
  • No
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How confident are you that your team/business area has the availability, tools and skills to meet their current goals?
  • Strongly unconfident (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Unconfident (Doing agile)
  • Undecided (Being agile)
  • Confident (Thinking agile)
  • Strongly confident (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. What tool does your team/business area use to manage work?
  • None
  • Physical board
  • Jira
  • Trello
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Other – Which one? (Text field)
  1. Do you have the right environments and automated tools?
  • Yes
  • No
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. Does the organization follow the right guidelines and practices to operate according to an agile mindset?
  • Yes
  • No
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. How would you rate the level of knowledge within the teams to achieve technical Excellency?
  • Novice (Ad-hoc agile)
  • Intermediate (Doing agile)
  • Skilled (Being agile)
  • Superior (Thinking agile)
  • Proficient, driven by continuous development (Culturally agile)
  • Additional comments (Text field)
  1. Do you have any suggestions on what [Company Name] our organisation could improve in terms of ways of working?
  • Open question (Text field)

———- Survey ends here ———-

It would be great to hear your thoughts and have your feedback about this survey.

Finally, I would like to give a special “thank you” to Anett Stoica, Diana Antão, Aurelie Rodrigues, Margarida CarvalhoMike Sousa and Helder Pereira for the survey revision and all their feedback.

Thank you!

One thought on “Enterprise Business Agility Maturity Survey

  1. Thanks for sharing this Eduardo. It is very comprehensive. I find this very useful in our day to day job.

    Like

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