Two years after adopting agile, BankWest sought to breathe new life into their transformation.

The situation

Bankwest is a full-service bank offering personal banking and business banking solutions for the financial needs of Australians. A division of its parent company, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Bankwest has offices in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne and Sydney.

Following a review in 2009, Bankwest made the decision to undergo an agile transformation. Under the old waterfall method, projects took one to two years to deliver with costly repercussions both in terms of cost of delay, cost of delivery, and cost of failure to deliver. Recognising the benefits an agile approach could deliver, the IT team sought support to overhaul their operations.

The solution

Bankwest engaged SoftEd 2-3 years into their agile journey to deliver Agile Fundamentals training to their teams.  We have since trained over 250 BankWest employees in the ICAgile certified Agile Fundamentals course. During this time we worked closely with the BankWest Agile Practice in aligning course delivery and content to the activities and approaches of their coaching team.

A key element in the success of this training was that demand was generated internally and in an organic fashion.  The team had a training schedule to choose their appropriate timing with the one requirement being that the Iteration Manager was to register the entire team. This created a pull-effect where the team was empowered to organise themselves, invite the entire team across the business value stream and learn together.

The result

Buy-in from executives meant that the agile adoption has been effective in delivering early wins. Development teams started working closely with the business, projects ran more seamlessly and teams organised themselves into project groups and away from siloed teams.

As well as faster development turnaround and fewer defects, agile has had a strong impact on the culture of the organisation and is seen as part of the organisational culture rather than purely a software development methodology.  It is this holistic view that has been key to driving the company forward. 

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We have partnered with SoftEd before for a couple of reasons: one is they offered us some amazing trainers that we're happy with, the other thing was that we had a really good working relationship with SoftEd; we knew they were partners we could trust.”

Richard McAllister,
Agile Practice Manager,