Author: Fred Depuy, COO
Every company has its challenges with delivering new products or technology to the market. Especially when speed-to-market and developing a consistent and sustainable process are the overarching goals. It can feel as though you’re in a constant state of “lowering the water level.”
At ARE, we’ve combined the methodology of Agile, along with our commitment to Lean Thinking, in developing a process that drives our software development. The process incorporates many of the principles found in both lean (removal of the 7 wastes) and agile (daily scrum meetings, use of Kanban for organizing backlog initiatives). What makes the process different for ARE is in “how” the development team reinforces the use of these principals on an on-going basis. Constant assessment, improvement and measurement. The result is a form of discipline, better yet…expectation, that’s found its way into the DNA of the team and company. Instead of milestones becoming huge monuments, the team breaks things down into manageable action items that allow for more successful contingency planning when required. Or stated another way, staying on the critical path!
As ARE’s CFO, Angel Lucero states, “software development is becoming a significant part of ARE. Therefore, the process of developing software that’s attached to market-driven cycle times has got to become a core competency.” No easy task but our team is up to the challenge and has been refining our process for the last 2+ years. In fact, we’re closing in on our first major product announcement and couldn’t have gotten this far without the culmination of lean thinking, agile and a dedicated team of professionals. We’re pretty fortunate.
 Agile methodology is a type of project management process, mainly used for software development, where demands and solutions evolve through collaborative effort of self-organizing and cross-functional teams and their customers.