Agile consulting brings added value to clients
While agile development has been the standard in the software industry for some time, it is much less common among consulting companies. Having recently moved from a traditional consulting model to team and value based delivery, iCore finds that the pros so far outweigh the cons.
– Agile consulting has resulted in quicker and smoother deliveries, increased flexibility and happier employees, says Rikard Karlsson, Vice President Consulting & Service at iCore.
For more than 20 years, iCore has been providing companies with business integration solutions, where the client’s needs has always been at the centre. In 2017, iCore started “working agile” in consulting, to further improve quality in both implementation and delivery.
Rikard Karlsson, Vice President Consulting & Service, and Sofia Lundberg, change manager and integration consultant, are responsible for developing the agile work method.
– We created teams consisting of consultants, sales representatives and support personnel – we made sure everyone was involved in our client deliveries. This has created a closer collaboration, both with our clients and within iCore, says Rikard Karlsson.
The benefits of agile consulting:
- Reduced personal dependence – projects do not depend on individual consultants.
- Quicker deliveries
- Access to wider expertise
- Provides a framework for continuous improvement.
Learn more about what it is like to work with agile consulting at iCore here.
A major benefit of agile teams, compared to the classic consulting model, is that iCore can implement integrations more quickly. Not being dependant on an individual consultant, but instead having an entire team behind you where everyone is up to date with the clients’ needs, can speed up development significantly. It also eliminates risks associated with the dependency on single consultants. In case of sick leave or high workloads, there is always an expert available. This is also a further assurance for the client to get deliveries on time.
– We are no longer run by consultants, but by teams and therefore improving our delivery of strategy, advice, support and value to our clients.
How does it work?
Each team is run by a team coach. A team can work with multiple clients at the same time, where members choose actions and daily tasks from an up-to-date backlog.
– Each client has a personal contact on iCore who is responsible for keeping a dialogue going with the client, as well as securing deliveries. However, each person on the team is well-informed about the client’s needs and integration challenges, says Sofia Lundberg, change manager and integration consultant at iCore.
Each team coach is also a member of the Product Solution Owner-team, or PSO. This team handles big assignments and is responsible for evaluating and assessing the other teams’ current workloads and introducing new clients to a team.
– We strive to be transparent towards the clients, and always try to work close to them. In the future we wish to be even closer, further ensuring continuous feedback to make us even better.
Increased exchange of knowledge
In moving away from the traditional consulting model, iCore has also experienced benefits in the onboarding process. New employees now have co-workers to learn from and work closely together with, resulting in improved collaboration and an important exchange of knowledge.
– We have a better working environment. Our colleagues enjoy themselves and our clients are satisfied. For us, working agile is the future and we will continue to optimize our procedures, says Rikard Karlsson.