A fundamental tenet of scaling Agile is linking the team-level activities with the business strategy, and the way to do that is through value stream management or mapping (VSM), according to Flint Brenton, CEO of the enterprise Agile solution provider CollabNet VersionOne.

VSM takes fragmented tools and processes and puts them in one place so that teams can gain data-driven insights that measure, track, optimize and align their process, he explained.  

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Agile is not the only mindset change that needs to happen within a business, Brenton explained. There also needs to be a shift in how our software and solutions are viewed. Today software is a significant part of business strategy and success, so as a result the business needs a better way to identify and manage their assets. Value stream management identifies and examines value streams so teams can provide process and flow improvements, increased collaboration and knowledge sharing, and alignment with the overall business strategy. 

To put it in football terms, “scaling Agile gets you in the red zone, but does not necessarily get you in the end zone so value stream management makes sure that not only do you get on the 20-yard line, but you are actually punting the football across the goal line. It allows you to successfully complete the process in an automated way. That is how value stream management takes Agile to another level,” said Brenton.