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Keeping A Living System Alive: The Solution Is Enterprise Solution Engineering.


Enterprise Solution Engineering is a term used to describe a series of methods used to better manage large-scale projects. These projects undergo such processes due to the fact that should they fail, the socio-economic fallout could be immense. Therefore, great attention to detail is used to reduce issues that could cause the project as a whole to fail. When engineers, developers and scientists are successful in creating large-scale projects, it is due to defining and coordinating all the activities to successfully.


These activities are broad; encapsulating the needs to specify, design, test, deploy, operate, and decommission, large complex operation systems. And are done through three processes, as identified in SAFe Distilled 5.0: Achieving Business Agility With Scaled Agile Framework, authors Richard Knaster and Dean Leffingwell:


• Lean system and solution engineering. Applies Lean-Agile practices to align and coordinate all the product life-cycle activities from specification to decommission for the world’s largest and most complex systems.


• Coordinating trains and suppliers. Coordinates and aligns the extended, often complex set of value streams to a shared business and technology mission. It uses a common vision, and aligns backlogs, roadmaps, Program Increments (PIs), and synchronization points.


• Continually evolve live systems. Large systems must be architected to support continuous deployment and release on demand. This allows enterprises to quickly learn, deliver value, and get to market before the competition with less investment and better outcomes.


Just as learning organisations never stop learning, a living system’s work is never truly done because the system is never complete; there is plenty of room to enhance practice. This is similar to small-scale projects in a sense; the constant process of updates to keep systems efficient and functional etc. if you were to not update your software, you would find yourself greatly frustrated by an absence of speed and efficiency that can be caused by patching bugs and problems in code.


In order to ensure that a living system continues to live, instead of crumbling into disarray, it is imperative that the systems in place work harmoniously in tandem. As mentioned above, the importance of coordinating trains and suppliers with an organisation allows for a greater sense of cohesion through a value stream, reducing friction etc. between the individuals within the company, and outwards. This can be from something as significant as a brand new release, to something as small as fixing a small glitch in the code that may inconvenience the end-user.


Even the smallest issues with a system can cause inconvenience or dissonance with the consumer. Through observing the gaming habits of those around me, it is rare for those playing games such as Animal Crossing: New Horizons to actively complain when their nets or fishing rods find themselves sticking out of the character’s head, disappearing in the middle when striking rocks or tree stumps etc. but it may cause friction on a player’s suspension of disbelief. However, gamers that engage in games with active combat elements, are likely more vocal with any grievances or inconveniences experienced due to bugs or glitches in the code; due to there being a direct link between a glitch and being killed by enemy combatants in the game.


Of course, gaming is the microcosm. It is a greater issue when it involves something of greater weight, such as internet connection. How many times have you been on your mobile data and suddenly lost signal of no fault of your own? You haven’t walked through a tunnel, or even under a bridge, but suddenly, you aren’t getting live updates on your handset anymore? Imagine that across an entire town due to poor reception on that one part of the map. How frustrated would you be? How inconvenienced? Now imagine, being accustomed to the unstable and laggy Wi-Fi, and the network going down. How angry would you be now? It’s all about weight, and the greater the weight of the problem in itself and the inconvenience it would call, the greater attention to detail you must pay to implement structures to keep your projects from failing.



Based in London, U.K., and founded in 2016 by Arvind Mishra The Agile Works (www.TheAgileWorks.com), is an up-and-coming recruitment and Agile consulting company. Arvind is a Certified SAFe SPC and regularly delivers both private and public SAFe certification workshops.


He is a design thinking expert, Sr. enterprise, portfolio Agile Coach with over a decade of experience working as an Agile coach in diverse industries such as banking, pharma, retail, auto, oil, gas, consulting and government.


The Agile Works; a small team of three strive to help shape the leadership's mind-set and values in readiness for their business transformation journey challenges. With Arvind at the helm, we strive to provide you with the agility tools to make your company that can thrive, and not just survive.


To book a consultation, or for any enquiries, you can contact Arvind via the following email address: arvind@theagileworks.com

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