Agile is a well-known practice nowadays, but it is still very much perceived as being restricted to the IT sector. However, like in other sectors, Agile in HR can be very beneficial to productivity.
What is Agile?
The Agile approach was brought upon as a new way to develop software, but it can be applied to many other business goals. In 2001, a group of technologists published the Agile Manifesto, which includes four key ideas for making better software:
- Individuals and a collaborative approach to work take precedence over defined processes and tools;
- A process that can adapt to change is essential;
- Focus on developing working, up-to-date software rather than adhering to a strictly defined waterfall development approach;
- Rather than negotiating a contract, learn from the consumer through customer participation.
The manifesto was a response to the 70’s waterfall software development approach which was perceived as rigid and at times uncollaborative.
Agile in HR: not just for developers
Agile originated in the software development industry and was introduced to better meet changing and complicated customer expectations. But what about people who cannot program? Why should they work in short iterations and be ready for necessary changes at any time?
An agile approach focuses the team’s efforts to create value and control capacity. These guidelines apply to any team delivering services or products.
For example, agile principles can be used by marketing, sales or legal teams that focus on rapid communication and short-term goals.
Experience in recent years has shown that re-evaluating HR and supply chain operations using agile frameworks adds a great value. Greater synergy can have a particularly positive impact on meeting cross-functional team deadlines.
The specifics of Agile in HR
Human Resources departments handle complicated projects and manage a wide range of stakeholders who often have conflicting goals. This requires constant, effective communication, program, administrative and talent management techniques.
Agile in HR has gained popularity as a discipline to enable HR practitioners to better control volatility, increase flexibility, and strengthen the business by applying agile approaches to their talent management operations.
Solving problems in HR has two components, just as solving problems in software has two parts. The first is creating a solution, and the second is deploying and sustaining that solution in the marketplace.
Agile in HR’s position today should not be limited to generalists and administrators; instead, they should build T-shaped talent that includes a comprehensive understanding of each specific HR function and the ability to collaborate across disciplines. Building a network of teams, using agile and lean approaches, cultivating human experience, and leveraging coaching culture are all things that leaders and HR professionals should