Case studies

Daily Scrum across the Design Studio

ZXM coaches a Design Studio to be agile

Agile frameworks aren't just for software teams. This whole Design Studio goes agile!

ZXM coaches a whole design studio to go agile!

Our challenge

ZXM was engaged by the Digital Experience Branch in the ATO to support the evolution of the Digital Delivery Branch and their design studio – video production, animation, UI, UX, and visual design – to adopt agile frameworks to improve transparency of work including developing and implementing an agile operating model.

The operating model not only had to encompass the UX and visual design of ATO's digital and physical products, but also:

  • beta.ato.gov.au
  • myATO – product management and experience design of ATO's internal Agile Release Train
  • ato.gov.au – ownership of the experience of the ATO's primary digital engagement channel

Our solution

ZXM’s solution focussed on creating transparency for decision-making using fast feedback loops and understanding value for prioritisation of work over non-economic models. Specifically, it involved creating a new agile operating model that was product agnostic, enabling design products from livestream video through to traditional print material to be appropriately managed through to delivery.

A typical Story for the Design Studio Simple Stories are now common place across the Design Studio over lengthy design briefs

A focus on coaching managers

ZXM first coached managers, supporting them with our deep knowledge of government and experience with agile frameworks to solve strategic and tactical issues at a Director level using Design Thinking and Scrum as their central practice. The goal was to engender both an agile mindset as well as a servant leadership culture within the managers so that they could lead their own teams to work using agile.

A futurespective by managers Managers in the Branch gathering for a futurespective activity as a Scrum Team

Coaching design teams to be agile

ZXM then rolled-out training across their sites across the country and coached support their teams through their first steps to being agile. We used techniques including self-selection, HR management through Product Owners, cross-team collaboration using Scrum of Scrums, and knowledge sharing along capability lines with Communities of Practice.

Cross-functional pairing in the Design Studio Designers quickly learned that cross-functional pairing provided them with real-time feedback loops

The results

Within 9 months, 15 teams from visual design and UX to video production were using Scrum, Lean and Kanban, with some experiencing 200-300% productivity improvements and radical transparency of their work. It's new operating model is now reducing management overhead and lead time to deliver digital and design outcomes to areas within the ATO as well as other government agencies.

Case studies