Whenever you hear a company touting the results of one of their funded studies or polls as interesting findings, there might be a cynical part of you wondering about the phrase “interesting”.
“Really? This fact is groundbreaking? Whatever, bro.”
Regardless of the strength of a fact’s validity, it isn’t always going to get through. But after seeing the final tabulation of results each month in the Arras People Ten in Ten Celebration of Project Management surveys, I can’t avoid describing the nature of project managers as an interesting lot anymore. You’ll just have to take the facts that support my soon to be written words for it.
In July, we focused on the rising mercury of the qualifications temperature gauge that is Agile, courtesy of the assistance of the DSDM Consortium. Namely, we began by asking “How familiar are you with Agile Project Management?”
Of the four answer choices, everyone almost eats a similar-sized pizza slice.
From there, we pieced together questions based on an individual’s responses to that leading question. Amongst those who were familiar with and used Agile in their daily working regimen, nearly half (46%) revealed to us that they held none of the leading Agile accreditations (things like Certified Scrum Master or Professional, APM-G Agile Project Management, DSDM Foundation, Practitioner or Advanced Practitioner). But for this group, by and large, their organisation’s deployment of Agile is a fairly recent concept, as the graph below shows.
So that’s almost three quarters of Agile project management users (73%) who adopted those techniques after 2006, thus giving the Agile movement a bit of a new and exciting feel to it. Couple that with 70% of people telling us they started using Agile after 2006, and you can believe Agile has reached the young project management practitioners in a strong manner.
Then you learn more, particularly how organisations would classify their use of Agile to date, and you realise how much room Agile has to grow in its application. Three-fifths of Agile appliers told us that Agile falls short of Mature/embedded, indicating that it is equally Partially implemented (30%) and Early stages still being introduced/assessed (30%). Is this a hump Agile must get past?
If you listen to what these people say about “the major change that has occurred with the deployment of Agile techniques”, there is a strong amount of buy-in:
- “Greater interaction with our customers.”
- “The culture – way of working.”
- “Faster, better, cheaper.”
- “Fewer problems in customer acceptance and more profitable projects.”
- “Better quality.”
- “Prioritisation of work based on value. Regular delivery into production.”
- “Better application software release.”
In terms of those participants who said they were familiar with Agile concepts but did not work in organisations that deployed it, you saw some similarities with the former group’s last trait. In all, 71% of the non-deploying became familiar with Agile after 2006. As you’d expect when the company doesn’t convert to such principles, this group does hold back a lot more on pursuing Agile accreditations – 84% told us they held none of the choices mentioned.
What was more interesting was a question tailored for this group only: “What is the main reason you do not use Agile techniques in your organization?”
In spite of all the comments from deployers above, this graph makes clear that some organisations are not either entirely sure what the Agile project management movement can bring to their processes, or aren’t buying what the technique is selling.
POSTSCRIPT: Could you be an influencer on what today’s project management practitioners are doing? Each month, Ten in Ten solicits the views of people connected to project management with a short survey of questions. This month, the grand prize to our two lucky draw winners receive tickets to the APM Project Management Awards, 1st November 2012 in London. Take part before Thursday night, and you could be the winner of one of those tickets Friday afternoon when we announce the winners here at The Camel!