Update on British Telecom Agile Adoption

I met Roger Leaton (British Telecom employee and Agile Advocate) and Geoff Watts (consultant, InspectandAdapt.com) at an in-house agile community gathering last week. They gave a peer presentation of the status of the agile rollout that they have been involved with at British Telecom. (A similar presentation was provided last year at Agile 2007). Roger noted that there were about 8,000 IT employees at BT and he estimated that as many as 25-30% of these had received Scrum training and were now operating in a substantially agile manner. That correlates to approximately 2,000-2,500 new agilists at BT worldwide. This is the largest rollout that I am personally aware of. (If anyone knows of even larger rollout, please shoot me an email.)

While, our paths had never crossed before, I was struck by the similarities of their experiences and my own. Clearly, there are some common patterns in Scrum and agile adoption in the really large scale, and I’ll comment on those on future posts. For now, however, with BTs permission I’ve posted their slides here (Scrum at BT) as a work-in-progress form of case study. Heads up though, it’s a 7MB download.

Roger notes that they have been collecting some hard metrics on the rollout, (hopefully to include productivity and quality measures) and we could hope to hear more from them soon.

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