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Shining light on scaling agile for Lutron Electronics

William Rojas
12 September 23 Agile
Lutron scaling agile

How Adaptavist teamed up with Atlassian to help a lighting technology market-leader embrace agile as it scaled, using SAFe® and Jira Align. 

Agile delivery is no mean feat, and making the leap can be even harder for established software development teams - not to mention throwing hardware into the mix, too. Lutron Electronics, a market leader in lighting control, wanted to scale its agile efforts but was struggling to navigate the journey without the right tools, processes, or culture. 

But with Adaptavist’s experience and knowledge and the implementation of Atlassian’s powerful Jira Align, Lutron’s transformation is undeniable – delivering better products and creating more value for its growing customer base.

The challenge

For true agile transformation to be successful it’s imperative that teams across the organisation buy into the changes. This was the big challenge for Lutron, and while their software teams were used to agile ways of working, hardware teams had a way to go. 

Designing, prototyping, and manufacturing compatible hardware can be a lengthy process. To compound the issue, there was a lack of clear visibility across the organisation, and an internal culture clash was thwarting collaboration and making dependency management a minefield.

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How Adaptavist and Atlassian joined forces to help Lutron scale agile practices

The engineering team wanted to implement the Scaled Agile Framework for Enterprise (SAFe®) – an ideal framework for larger projects and fast-growing organisations. But while Lutron’s software teams were ready to bid farewell to waterfall development, hardware teams were going to take some convincing. 

To build buy-in, the team looked to Adapatvist to help pilot SAFe® in one product area. This approach paid off, and about a year into its implementation engineering had increased output by 34 percent. Leadership could clearly see the benefits, and getting support from hardware teams became much easier. 

Of course, moving to SAFe® required a mindset shift. Jon Kern, co-author of the Agile Manifesto and Agile Consultant at Adaptavist, mentored both teams, helping them focus on outcomes as opposed to actions. For the hardware teams in particular, Jon helped shift thinking to learning goals for the sprint, reducing the gap between taking an action and getting feedback.

It soon became clear that Lutron’s legacy tooling wasn’t up to the task of providing organisation-wide visibility. In stepped Jira Align, which integrated seamlessly with Lutron’s existing Atlassian platform. Now, Lutron uses Jira Align and Jira Software for business planning and program increment (PI) planning. This facilitates portfolio-level coordination by providing program owners and portfolio stakeholders with a single source of truth for PI objectives, work items, and dependencies. 

Thanks to Adaptavist’s guidance and Jira Align, Lutron has moved away from a management-and-control way of thinking and has the right tool to give them the visibility they needed to successfully scale their agile practices. 

Interested in learning more about Lutron’s agile transformation journey and their success with Jira Align?

Read Atlassian’s full case study
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