How Enterprises Adopt Agile Structures: A Multiple-Case Study

AbstractIncreasing speed and flexibility is of strategic importance to almost any company in times of digital transformation. While startups or "born-digital" companies are agile by nature, traditional companies are struggling with the question of how to increase organizational agility. Little knowledge exists about how enterprises adopt and scale agile practices and structures. This exploratory study with twelve global cases examines how traditional companies adopt and scale agile structures. We found that (1) agile structures are currently adopted by enterprises at large scale, (2) agile structures are adopted not only by IT, but also by business units, and (3) while Spotify's organization serves as a widespread template for a fully agile unit, enterprises adapt and fine-tune this template according to their needs and scale. Furthermore, we identified three additional models for fully agile structures where a fully agile unit with cross-product support is the most frequently observed model.

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