At its core, the shift to Agile is not only about process and technology — it’s about culture.
At a webinar hosted by AGL and GMIS International, a panel of public sector leaders with on-the-job agile experience shared their stories, insights and practical advice, concluding that agencies really can shift their approach toward agile if they’re willing to embrace some fundamental changes in government IT culture.
Rob Read, co-founder of GSA’s lean digital services agency 18F, has led multiple departments through agile workshops. He talks about procurement in an Agile shop:
“It takes courage,” Read says, “because you have to make a shift away from the idea of contract negotiation and have faith and trust that if you have a conversation with people who are appropriately skilled, you’re going to be happy with what they produce in that particular time.”
Tim Nolan, senior applications manager at Collin County, Texas, introduced his department to agile about five years ago. He explains that Agile projects require much more communication than documentation:
“There is a lot of documentation written that is never being read,” Nolan points out. “User stories serve much better . . . The challenge is really with the culture change.”
Embracing these changes is often an uphill battle for government. Old habits die hard. But the cultural shift is contagious — from the smallest city departments to the largest federal agencies, a growing number of people are making and sustaining positive changes in government using agile.
Read the full article: 5 cultural shifts Agile brings to agencies | NextGov
Listen to the webinar: How Agile works for gov: Stories from the front lines