Business Agility: A Guide (With Meaning, Steps And Benefits)

Updated 16 September 2022

Enterprise agility refers to adaptability, which enables businesses to remain competitive and successful as market conditions change. You can achieve enterprise agility by implementing effective strategies and establishing objectives guided by the company's mission. Learning the various methods for enhancing enterprise agility can help you develop a comprehensive business strategy effectively. In this article, we define business agility, explain its importance, discuss how to measure it and provide tips for improvements.

What Is Business Agility?

Business agility is the capacity to adapt to a fluctuating market, consumer and production conditions. An agile business can often succeed and gain a competitive advantage despite these changes because it can adapt to the industry and customers successfully. This makes it necessary for organisations to enhance their operations in areas such as technology, finance and law to be agile. Businesses can also improve their procedures, production, marketing, security and customer service by implementing this method.

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Why Implement Enterprise Agility?

Here are some reasons you can consider when you implement enterprise agility:

  • Helps sustain competitive advantage: A business may distinguish itself from competitors if it monitors and responds to the market regularly. Workplace agility enables enterprises to adopt new technological features and capitalise on emerging trends ahead of the competition.

  • Improves skills: Agile businesses can create effective practices for their employees. When organisations continue to refine their standards and encourage continuous development, their teams may be more likely to acquire new skills and produce exceptional results.

  • Enhances productivity: Enterprise agility aims to reduce time to market, allowing products to reach customers more quickly and teams to focus on problem-solving and product creation. Agile infrastructure places a premium on speed and efficiency and, as employees adopt an agile mindset, they may accelerate internal processes and help enhance overall productivity.

  • Increases resilience: Enterprise agility may help with these problems if a business wants to survive circumstances like economic downturns, industry transformations and social and cultural changes. Companies that adopt an agile mindset can better address problems as they arise and prevent losses by being proactive.

  • Encourages team cohesion: Agile businesses consider the connections between the contributions of each team, whereas conventional businesses may allow specialists in different fields to work independently with little impact on one another. Businesses might benefit from using this framework to improve team cohesion and alignment.

How To Measure Business Agility

Here are steps you can follow to measure an organisation's agility:

1. Describe the company's mission

The company mission is a statement that reflects the organisation's guiding principles and a vision for its future. A mission statement is an essential element of a business plan, as it helps decide and guide the creation of operational strategies. You may define a company's mission by identifying the priority and necessity of the organisation and selecting a long-term objective for the business. For instance, if you work for an information technology company, your mission may be to develop innovative products and make it easier to store and access data using technical devices.

2. Set goals

Using the company's mission as a guide, you can establish objectives to help you realise your vision. Your objectives also contribute to the organisation's adaptability and responsiveness to changes in the business environment. Try to ensure that you measure the outcome when setting a goal. You can accomplish this by establishing a deadline and identifying relevant metrics to monitor during the implementation process. You can gauge your objectives with metrics, such as conversion rates, customer retention, revenue and customer satisfaction. Businesses can use specific, measurable, achievable, effective and time-bound (SMART) goals to develop effective plans.

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3. Make a strategy

A strategy is a series of steps that direct an individual or group towards achieving a goal. To make a strategy, determine which tasks the team can undertake to achieve the desired outcome. Then, specify each task so that a team can execute each strategy step. Developing a strategy can also necessitate identifying the employees involved in achieving the objective, which can be helpful in delegating tasks efficiently. A strategy also provides a timeline and schedule for a project's tasks.

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4. Execute your strategy

Implementing the strategy amongst the team is the next step in being able to assess how agile the company is. Successful strategies can positively impact the workplace, the workforce and the products the business produces, which can increase customer satisfaction. Leaders who can mentor and support staff during times of change are necessary for implementing a strategy. It is also important to improve communication and make sure employees receive clear instructions to ensure what their tasks are and to finish them accordingly.

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5. Use key metrics to evaluate goals

After implementing and executing a strategy, you measure its success based on the metrics you determined earlier. If you achieve the objective, you may use the same metrics in the future when implementing similar strategies. If you do not, you can reconsider the method to monitor the changes you intend to implement.

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Benefits Of Enterprise Agility

Enterprise agility is essential because it enables a company to remain operational during periods of change. Given that markets in most businesses can often change rapidly, it is essential to adapt and update the business plan to ensure continued success. Enterprise agility is also essential for client satisfaction. Customers are more likely to remain loyal to a company whose products continually improve. Here are some of the potential advantages of enterprise agility:

More motivated employees

Organisational agility may have a positive effect on the culture of the workplace. These principles enable employees to connect with and comprehend the organisation's bigger goals, which may give the employees a greater sense of purpose to fulfil the company objectives. Enhanced cooperation can also improve working relationships, resulting in more dedicated employees.

Related: Why Employee Motivation Is Important: A Complete Guide

Increased client satisfaction

Agile businesses often strive to meet the requirements of their customers. Current technology, market knowledge and a competitive strategy can all help businesses provide exceptional service to their customers. Enterprise agility also seeks to increase productivity by reducing response time and deliberation, so that agile businesses may provide clients with useful solutions quicker than conventionally organised businesses.

Related: Customer Satisfaction: How To Measure And Tips For Improvement

Improved work quality

Agile organisations aim to deliver more creative results by focusing on deploying new technologies and developing superior solutions. An organisation's agility fosters continuous growth by allowing businesses to learn from their successes and adapt accordingly. This strategy can assist businesses in developing their procedures and enhancing their quality standards. Businesses may have more time to improve their goods and services if they execute innovation and the creation of tangible products swiftly.

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Lower costs

To reduce employee expenses, agile businesses train their employees to work across departments, acquire new skills and gain independence. Besides saving time and cost, businesses can benefit from a more streamlined and reactive approach to work. The model also teaches teams how to use their resources more efficiently and manage their internal budgets, which contributes to a reduction in overall spending.

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Tips On How To Improve Enterprise Agility

Here are tips on how to improve enterprise agility in an organisation:

Prioritise the customers

Maintaining a successful business often requires customers and the ability to grow the customer base. Along with providing value to the customer through marketing, production and distribution, optimising customer service can help ensure that the company places the customer's requirements first. You can learn more about the customers' demands and requirements by requesting feedback from them using surveys. Increasing customer engagement via social media and email campaigns, along with in-person interactions, can also improve customer satisfaction.

Invest in new technologies

Technological progress is one of the primary drivers of business transformation and innovation. Companies can remain competitive by investing in these new technologies and integrating them into their business operations. For instance, updating operating systems can make processes more efficient, which can cause a quicker production and distribution of the product to customers. Technology can also improve customer interactions. For instance, social media platforms can offer a low-cost and readily available means of connecting with consumers.

Build strong leadership within the company

Competent leaders can help ease transitions and foster positivity when a company is undergoing change. An effective leader can introduce innovation and devise methods for enhancing both business processes and employee abilities. Skilled leaders have characteristics, such as effective communication and clarity of thought that help them guide and instruct people on the tasks to undertake to meet business goals.

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Strengthen the employees

Companies that value adaptability may prioritise hiring agile employees. Improving hiring procedures helps identify able individuals who can contribute to the company's mission and enrich its culture. Providing employees with extensive training and professional development opportunities can also be advantageous, as it enables them to develop skill sets that can also enhance an enterprise's agility.

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