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Agile mindset meets classic management methods

Many agile project management and product development methods such as Design Thinking, Kanban or Scrum have a reputation for achieving further developments faster than with classical approaches: goal-oriented and customer-oriented. This is a tempting prospect in view of the need to accelerate the digitization of business models, products and processes, and is also helpful for starting a race to catch up with the competition. At the same time, it is hardly surprising that agile projects are not easily integrated into classic corporate management. The differences between an "agile mindset" and a classic "controller or management mindset" seem too great. 

An assessment of projects in a financial context is therefore often difficult, for example with regard to activation possibilities and timing. Sometimes management and controlling stand baffled before the results of agile projects, without understanding whether and how the invested funds contribute to the company's success.

Agility and controlling are not contradictory per se

Properly executed, agile projects are more transparent than many classically executed ones. A two-stage control approach ensures this: the agile business case and the agile center.

An agile business case first makes it possible to decide which project method fits: Classic or agile? Depending on this, the business case is continued according to the chosen method, so that a basis for further project controlling results. 

The agile center is a further development of the classic center types – profit, performance or cost center. It takes into account the characteristics of agile projects and also ensures integration into the existing controlling processes (planning, forecast, reporting). The agile center not only manages agile projects, but also agile organizational units.

Design of a control system for agile organizational units

Horváth & Partners' two-component management approach in agile environments has already proven its worth many times over. After all, we can look back on over ten years of experience in the successful implementation and management of agile projects.