Alignment: Alignment is necessary in order to keep pace with a rapidly changing environment, disruptive competitive forces, and geographically distributed teams. When projects are going according to plan, Agile Teams have a tendency to function well. However, the responsibility for developing strategy and ensuring alignment cannot rest exclusively with the combined effort of the teams, no matter how capable they are of functioning harmoniously. Rather, alignment must come from the previously decided Enterprise business objectives.
Built-in quality: Built-in quality ensures that every element and every increment of the solution or project achieved by a team reflects consistently high quality standards throughout the development lifecycle. Quality is not something to be “added later.” Ensuring built-in quality is a prerequisite of Lean and flow. Without it, the organisation is setting itself up to operate with large batches of unverified and unvalidated work. Excessive rework and slower velocities are the likely results of this poor approach.
Transparency: Trust is required to ensure transparency within teams and within an organization overall. However, trust can only begin to exist when the business and development teams can confidently rely on one another to act with integrity, even in tumultuous times of uncertainty and difficulty. Without trust, no one can build high-performance teams and programs, nor build or rebuild the confidence needed to make and meet reasonable commitments. Furthermore, without trust, working environments lack the fun and motivation which further facilitate productivity.
Program Execution: Of course, no part of SAFe is relevant anymore if teams are unable to bridge the gap between strategy development and execution, which is particularly what allows them to continuously deliver value. Therefore, the Scaled Agile Framework places an immense focus on working systems and business outcomes. History has shown us that while many enterprises start the SAFe transformation with individual Agile teams, they often become frustrated, since even those individual teams may end up struggling to deliver substantial amounts of solution value, both reliably and efficiently.