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What is agile?

There’s a focus for organisations today to become increasingly agile, but what exactly does that mean? And why is agile working of growing importance for business in 2015 and beyond?

what is agile

The context

Today’s business environment is challenging. It requires traditional leaders to rethink the way they work as new, nimble organisations with fresh approaches are constantly born. Industries are more pressured, consumers are savvier and change is constantly afoot. A number of social, technological and economic changes have led us to where we are today, to a point in which new ways of working must be considered in order to provide longevity in such uncertain times. These changes include…

  • Globalisation
  • Changing lifestyle preferences
  • Shifting workforce demographics
  • Global markets
  • Technology, the internet and mobile connectivity

What is agile?

Agile working is a modern approach to aligning staff drivers with company goals. What once would have been a perk for employee and a cost for the employer is configured under agile practice to benefit both parties. It’s a simple and straight-forward concept – work out what staff want, work out what the business wants and align the two.

The Agile Future Forum (AFF), a Mckinsey supported initiative set up during the UK’s coalition government, champions the value of agile working and its importance to UK growth. Having been set up to investigate agile working and subsequently proving its effectiveness, the AFF – which includes organisations such as BP, Lloyds Banking Group and John Lewis; which also happen to be LEO clients – now looks at how agile working can be adopted to have the same, profound effect in other businesses.

The benefits of agile working

Agile working makes organisations more dynamic. On the ground, staff can be multi-skilled while working around the demands of customers with a working pattern that suits their lifestyle. It allows for greater flexibility and improved cohesion as the orientation

  • Increased productivity
  • Meeting demand spikes
  • Decreased unproductive capacity
  • Increased quality of output through multi-skilled staff
  • Improved customer service through better knowledge
  • Talent attraction and retainment through flexible and remote working opportunities

Supporting agile with learning

Whether it’s a seasonal induction programme; improved development for mobile, part-time and shift workers or harnessing collaboration through social and informal knowledge networks, LEO understands how to support agile working by implementing learning-driven solutions. To learn more about how LEO can assist your organisation in staying ahead of competition through agile working, get in touch with us today.
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