Coca Pitzer from the Dublin office of Retail inMotion (RiM) believes that the principles and values that stand behind the Agile philosophy are just what our onboard-retail experts need to succeed. She is a woman with a passion for this philosophy and a vision to transform the way that Retail inMotion approaches its business.
Imagine you’re baking a cake. To do that, you need to mix in the right ingredients at the right time and then, layer by layer, create the cake. That is how Coca Pitzer, Head of Design & Agile Transformation at Retail inMotion, explains the concept of Agile working. “With traditional project management, you’re baking a cake and building it layer by layer,” she explained. “The cake is only ready after every layer has been baked and the icing has been added. With Agile thinking, we are building a cake slice by slice. That way, the customer can try the cake one piece at a time. We’re able to deliver more quickly and also adapt to any changing requirements by adjusting our recipe.” Agile brings all the ingredients of the cake (in RiM’s case, the IT developers, quality assurance engineers, designers and project leaders) together from the beginning so that everything is ready for baking from the start.
An Agile vision at RiM
Pitzer is leading the way toward making every Retail inMotion employee understand the basic principles and concepts behind the methodology so that the company can truly become an Agile organization. “We have a vision to train everyone at RiM,” explains Pitzer. “Having a ground-level understanding of the foundation of Agile thinking is a key communications success criterion for our team. Agile is not just for IT developers. It’s an innovative way to approach problems and create solutions that can be applied to any team.”
How agile works at Retail inMotion
The Agile methodology is a human-centric way to approach projects and product development differently. The main idea is to break projects into smaller, more achievable pieces. This allows product teams, like those at Retail inMotion, to get a better, more client- focused solution to their customers faster. For Retail inMotion, that means that the team is focused on including all the relevant stakeholders as early as possible and making sure that their opinions are heard. From there, the teams build solutions that add real value to both the end users and the company’s clients. Every individual is close to the end results and sees the effect that they are having on the final product. That’s where the importance of the methodology lies for Retail inMotion. Everyone is involved and invested in delivering the best results for customers, both quickly and efficiently.
The five benefits of Agile
The implementation of the Agile approach at Retail inMotion has resulted in the transformation of the company’s overall orientation. In parallel, there are five clear benefits for both customers and the company:
- Retail inMotion’s teams are more client-focused.
- The onboard retail start-up’s customers receive their solutions more openly, transparently and collaboratively.
- Within the framework of smaller projects, the team is more daring and innovative with the software they are creating.
- Employees are more open about their issues, challenges and effectively voicing concerns when they need support on a project.
- The team’s focus has shifted toward building a product that truly adds value to the customers and end users.
Agile vs. the Traditional Approach to IT Product Development
What exactly are the ideas related to Agile thinking and why are they important for an organization? Quite simply, the Agile methodology allows cross-functional and multi-disciplinary teams to deliver better results faster. The traditional way of approaching IT product development has been to scope requirements from clients and extensively plan out projects. After intense planning phases were complete. Companies would then spend months developing software and subsequently testing the product to work out any mistakes or “bugs” in the code. Only after all of these steps were completed; would the client be shown the final result. This approach often led to dissatisfied clients and software that wasn’t customer-focused.
An Agile Mindset – Even at Pitzer’s home
It comes as no surprise that Pitzer is not only passionate about implementing the Agile mindset at Retail inMotion but also in her personal life. But experimenting with Agile at home helped her improve the family routine and enabled them to connect with each other when making and executing plans for the weekend, for example. “As parents, my husband and I are constantly impressed with the evolving abilities of our kids to self- organize and resolve their own problems.” This is proof of how effective she is at implementing Agile. Whether it’s at home to engage with her family or at work to bring the RiM teams’ work to an entirely new level, Pitzer knows how to mix the right ingredients.
About Coca Pitzer
- Has experience of working with the agile methodology for several years already.
- Has been implementing the agile working approach since she started at RiM just over a year ago.
- Worked on agile projects in both Ireland and her native Brazil.
- Is such a strong believer in the fundamentals of the philosophy that she has implemented them into her personal life, as well.