2019 Business Agility Report

“In a world of accelerating change, increasing complexity, rapidly changing technology, digitization and the internet, many organizations are still locked in the slow-moving, topdown, bureaucratic practices and processes of 20th century bureaucracy. They are finding it difficult to sense and respond to disruptive shifts in the marketplace. Their very capacity to survive, let alone thrive, is in question.”

Thus begins the preface to the 2019 Business Agility Report by Steve Denning, author of “The Age of Agile.” Continuing the theme from last year, the survey for the 2019 Report found that, while most organizations rate their current business agility maturity relatively low, they have enthusiasm and hope for the future. Many respondents report that they are struggling with systemic leadership issues relating to trust, investment and culture while maintaining ongoing momentum in their business agility journey.

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The most exciting result was the discovery of three key predictors of business agility in both the 2018 and 2019 studies: organizations who report higher ratings in these three characteristics also report higher overall business agility and associated benefits:

  1. FUNDING MODELS By funding business outcomes (rather than specific work outputs or projects), adaptive funding models and associated governance processes allow organizations to quickly and easily invest in new products or services as soon as market opportunities arise and, just as quickly, stop or change work that isn’t delivering the expected business value.
  2. VALUE STREAMS By designing flexible work processes that are both efficient and customer-centric, value streams allow organizations to tightly integrate teams from across the organization in service of maximizing value creation for the customer.
  3. RELENTLESS IMPROVEMENT By encouraging a culture of learning and experimentation to thrive, organizations will continuously improve both what they do and (more importantly) how they do it, thus reducing costs, improving efficiency, and delivering greater value to customers.

The 2019 Business Agility Report is released in partnership by the Business Agility Institute, Accenture | SolutionsIQ and AgilityHealth.