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As an SAP CFO Advisor, we are often asked before a major SAP project which form of project method is the most up-to-date. In this blog post we want to introduce our Best Practice approach based in a nutshell on the experience from the authors concerning the “Lab Sprint Methodology” and the “Innovation delivery service”.

Agility: The ability to respond faster to changes in the marketplace or the business and pivot business processes towards the right outcomes.

In order to use this ability in the development of an intelligent enterprise system, modern project and software development methods are applied:

At the beginning of every project there are many considerations, conflicting viewpoints and many discussions about what the final result should look like. In order to generate the best possible outcome in a short time, the "Lab Sprint Methodology" was developed.

Innovation Lab Sprint methodology

How does it work?

With the Innovation Lab Sprint Methodology, you will identify use cases and built them up in a rapid prototyping approach. Based on these results, you will get receive valuable information in which specific cases you should invest your time and resources.

In the beginning you have to setup teams to develop ideas and decide on use cases. After e.g. a lead time of three weeks you start a sprint of one week to recap and to develop prototypes.

During this week there are several sessions to recap the ideas and to prepare prototypes which are presented at the end of the week during a Playback Session.

This procedure releases innovation and incorporates the whole power of the business and the people.

To accompany the procedure from a consulting point of view, companies need a Trusted Advisor like SAP Consulting who supports the customer by enabling the Intelligent Enterprise in the Enterprise Economy. The Trusted Advisor supports customers with solution expertise and deep industry insights. Services, support, training and tool guides, simplify and accelerate the journey to an Intelligent Enterprise. Furthermore collaboration within the ecosystem will drive innovation and creates exceptional business outcome.

Once the goals are defined by the Lab Sprint method, the overall plan is broken down into many individual work packages and distributed to the work teams.

Use of Innovation delivery service to Build Solutions

At the beginning of the Innovation delivery service method, the scope of the product, process or subtasks to be developed is defined and broken down into individual packages. These work packages are transferred to a product backlog, where the individual development teams can then extract and process their respective work lists. The development of the target product takes place in a so-called sprint phase, which usually lasts two to three weeks.

At the beginning of this sprint phase, the planning of this sprint, which goals are to be achieved, and how the sprint is to run, is the first step. This is followed by the actual work, in which the current status is discussed daily by the development teams. In this way, incorrect developments can be avoided at an early stage, which leads to increased effectiveness and lower costs.

After the development period a Sprint Review takes place, in which the results and outcomes are presented, demo sessions are shown and feedback is obtained.

In order to improve the quality of the next sprints, the last step is a Sprint Retrospective in which the experiences made are exchanged and used for future improvements.

Three Core Steps, from Planning to Release to Production

After the developments are completed, they are tested for their functionality by an intelligent test management. This is usually done in a test system before the developments are used and go live. After successful implementation, the project plans are examined again and the next project cycle begins. Through the interaction of these modern, agile methods, even large IT projects can be carried out efficiently and target-oriented.

To draw a conclusion, most current SAP IT projects are mainly implemented in an agile way, because you can say simplified:

“The path to an intelligent enterprise system is modern, flexible and agile.”