Adopting Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe)

Download PDFLearning how to go agile and do analysis in agile is one thing (hopefully, you took our Agile Analysis Boot Camp), but scaling agile in a medium to large organization is another effort entirely. As simple as the agile methodology wants to be, it can get complicated when you bring multiple teams into the mix. The Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) is a specific approach to scaling and structuring agile by helping teams manage dependencies and risk through coordination and communication at the program and portfolio level.

Where are you in your SAFe adoption?

  • You’ve taken an introduction to SAFe class.
  • You’ve started implementing SAFe.
  • One of your team members has been SAFe certified.

Regardless of where you are in the implementation process, you need to make the process work for your organization. The beauty of agile is its flexibility and focus on lean processes and the concept of “just enough”. This core concept doesn’t need to be forgotten when scaling agile in your organization. This boot camp will answer the question, “How much SAFe does your organization need?”

In this boot camp, we will level-set your multi-team framework and identify areas where implementing the framework may be too heavy. Then we will work through intensive case studies to apply SAFe concepts and identify healthy habits in a scaled agile culture. During these case study activities, we will address your issues as we walk through the team, program, and portfolio level activities.

Learning Objectives

  • Understand how different agile environments impact roles, planning, and ceremonies for SAFe
  • Review the top-down hierarchy of managing value with emphasis on the portfolio and program
  • Align analysis techniques with each stage and step in the SAFe framework
  • Understand how to best facilitate communication among the SAFe stakeholders (i.e. portfolio managers, product managers, product owners, scrum masters, special services, release managers)
  • Develop portfolio initiatives, epics, themes, features, and capabilities for the purposes of building the right solution and tracing value
  • Apply elicitation and analysis to help make the best decisions at the portfolio and program level
  • Outline the role analysis plays in managing, estimating, and prioritizing the portfolio and release plan
  • Identify and negotiate the factors associated with ready and done
  • Practice portfolio and release planning using case studies and mock exercises
  • Effectively establish a triage approach to manage the flow of new initiatives
  • Identify how a portfolio or program level analyst helps manage changing needs

Class Experience

Interactive workshops allow students to practice the techniques as they learn. Students will be given an end-to-end, pragmatic approach of how to apply the framework to help prevent missed integration, interface disconnects, and disruptions that can impact the solution delivery of multiple teams. Similar to our Agile Analysis Boot Camp, in this class, we will demonstrate how to address what is ready, what is done, and what is just enough, but this time with a focus on the program and portfolio levels.

Course Outline

Introduction to SAFe2 hours

  • What is SAFe?
    • Confirm understanding of framework and terminology
  • Discuss impacts to your organization as a result of adopting SAFe
  • Understanding the SAFe values
  • Overview of SAFe 3.0, 4.0, 5.0 evolution
  • Overview of roles and responsibilities on the SAFe team
  • Overview of SAFe artifacts and measurements
  • Understand DevOps role in scaled agile
  • Workshop: Mock sprint

Portfolio Level Workshop4 hours

  • Workshop to determine how well your team is functioning in a SAFe agile environment
    • Simulate a roadmap planning workshop
    • Discuss budgeting at the team versus project level
    • Discuss architecture planning
    • Identify strategic themes
    • Walk through an epic Kanban (business & architecture)
    • Create a feature roadmap
    • Establish portfolio performance metrics
  • Debrief and learn areas where improvement is needed

Program Level Workshop4 hours

  • Workshop to determine how well your team is functioning in a SAFe agile environment
    • Simulate release planning workshop based on roadmap
    • Simulate product management coordination
    • Simulate scrum of scrums
    • Manage program backlog
    • Manage and update feature roadmap, release plan/agile release train schedule
    • Establish release burn down and burn up
  • Debrief and learn areas where improvement is needed

Shared Services Level Workshop3 hours

  • Workshop to determine how well your team is functioning in a SAFe agile environment
    • Simulate backlog prioritizing and grooming
    • Sprint planning
    • Review and retrospectives
    • Defect management and defect log
    • Stories versus tasks
    • Burn down and burn up
  • Debrief and learn areas where improvement is needed

Course Summary1 hour

  • Bringing it all together – learning backlog review
  • Develop an action plan with next steps on the student’s current project


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adopting scaled agile framework
Request Onsite
Length 2 days
Intended Audience

This boot camp was developed for students with a foundational knowledge of agile and SAFe processes and principles. We recommend this boot camp for anyone working in a scaled agile environment, but it is especially helpful for product owners, business analysts, product managers, scrum masters, architects, shared services managers, project managers, program managers, PMO managers, initiative/epic owners, DevOps managers, systems analysts, or any other team member involved with the planning of an agile project.

Prerequisites None

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