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How important is Agile HR in an organization?

Although Agile began in the software development industry, corporations are now adopting it more and more throughout the entire organization. Business divisions like marketing, finance, and human resources are included in Agile HR.

Agile HR is a crucial subject to investigate, regardless of whether your business is actively pursuing Enterprise Agility or you’re just looking for a way to enhance how your HR department runs. In this post, we’ll give you a general overview of Agile HR, explain why you should think about implementing it, go through the key ideas and procedures involved, and explain how to determine whether Agile HR is a good fit for your HR team.

What is Agile HR?

Agile HR is, as one might imagine, just the application of Agile principles to the functions and pursuits of human resources specialists. A good online Agile certification course will explain what Agile HR is all about.

The Agile HR mindset

Agile HR is a collection of roles and processes, but it’s also a mindset and a set of principles, much like Agile software development. In truth, the roles and processes won’t work unless the right mentality and culture are supporting them. The agile HR way of thinking entails:

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  • A focus on the benefits you provide to your clients (the employees in your organization) and the company.
  • A shift to value delivery that is incremental rather than creating and launching massive annual initiatives.
  • The capacity and willingness to experiment and learn continuously, then alter direction when feedback from customers suggests that is necessary. 

Agile HR is more than just fitting the current HR processes and duties into a new meeting schedule and using a new tool to make to-do lists. It involves altering the way the HR team approaches its work and continually seeking out methods to enhance its output.

Why consider implementing Agile methodologies in HR?

Using Agile in human resources has a number of advantages:


The way work is prioritised and assigned facilitates quicker task completion and goal attainment once the team has received training and experience utilising Agile concepts. Agile projects are iterative, which means they move from conception to implementation significantly more quickly, followed by feedback collecting and continual improvement. This makes it possible to give consumer value much more frequently, which is incredibly fulfilling.


The approach delivers higher-quality outcomes since the emphasis is on providing value and the strategy is continually tested, reviewed, and revised based on learning. This facilitates the work of the HR team members and enhances the company’s perception of HR and the initiatives they participate in.


The fact that team members are consistently doing the right thing is one of the most effective outcomes of the Agile planning process. Teams can complete the most crucial tasks as rapidly as possible thanks to prioritisation and the flexibility to change course as necessary.

4.Higher employee engagement.

The greater accountability and openness that Agile firms foster are advantageous to their employees. Traditional teams do not have the autonomy that self-organizing teams possess. Agile approaches in HR also result in better hiring, onboarding, professional development, and performance review procedures, all of which improve the workplace satisfaction of the organization.

  1. Many types of feedback.

Feedback is routinely gathered from the entire business, regardless of roles and backgrounds, because the feedback loop is such a crucial component of any Agile HR program. The redesigning of the employee performance evaluation process and how that translates to continuous improvement is another significant outcome of pursuing Agile Human Resources

Agile Human Resources principles and use cases

Let’s now examine three specific instances of fundamental Agile concepts and how an Agile HR team may implement them in day-to-day operations.

1.Embrace trying new things.

Top-down long-range planning models must make way for user-driven, nimbler approaches that are better suited for rapid adaptation in an Agile HR department. Agile principles do not support trying to plan a year or more in advance. It’s impossible to guarantee that the initiatives you prepare in January will still be effective and beneficial in December given how much can change in a year.

How important is Agile HR in an organization?

Such a technique is known as fast prototyping in software development, which entails the production of a minimally viable product (MVP), which in the context of human resources may be a specific program or procedure, and its release to the client. Following the release, the following phase is getting feedback directly from customers or users (the people in the organization). The next step is to develop and make available the next version of the software or procedure.

How important is Agile HR in an organization?

The core of agility is this cycle of hypothesis, test, review, and repetition, which is also known as “inspect and adapt.” Agile rituals that promote inspection and adaptation include Sprint Reviews and Sprint Retrospectives. All HR initiatives, from recruiting and onboarding to learning and development, can be incrementally improved through experimentation. Internal HR procedures might use the same fundamental principle for organizational programs and initiatives.

2.Create robust feedback loops.

The annual performance evaluation and staff goals that cascade down from annual departmental and corporate objectives are frequently the first traditional HR practices to disappear in the pursuit of Enterprise Agility. It rapidly becomes apparent that a performance assessment that arrives once a year from one employer makes little sense as people work on shorter-term projects of various lengths, frequently run by several leaders, and structured around teams.

Employees require more positive criticism from more sources, more frequently. Many firms now regularly evaluate employee performance, frequently on a project-by-project basis. The emphasis is on providing more quick feedback throughout the year so teams may “course-correct” as necessary, boost productivity, and pick up new skills iteratively (all essential elements of agile principles).

A more comprehensive feedback loop can be incorporated into the performance review process by an Agile HR team, even if the rest of the firm is not currently undergoing an Agile transformation. And that goes beyond just how managers assess their staff. Feedback from and to all sources is essential to the success of an agile organisation. The essential culture change can be supported by HR.

3.Prioritise teams over individuals.

A team sport can be likened to Agile. In terms of recruitment, onboarding, training and development, and performance reviews, traditional HR places a strong emphasis on the individual. Yet at a company that uses Agile HR, the focus is on the teams.

Starting with the hiring process, HR places more emphasis on locating candidates who possess the soft skills that the teams need to succeed. Once the right people are in place, the organization can give the teams the necessary training to upgrade their skills in preparation for particular projects or to fill in any technical gaps.

The emphasis on teams affects how performance is evaluated. As was already mentioned, more frequent feedback is typically preferred to the yearly performance evaluation. So is there no foundation for merit raises in the absence of an annual review? Instead, an Agile HR organization will assess a person’s performance in light of the efficiency of the entire team. The team members will be eligible for the offered rewards if they achieve or surpass their targets.

How important is Agile HR in an organization?

Teams can analyze their decisions, find areas for improvement, and take ownership of their outcomes through retrospectives. Teams are self-organized, so if a member is not contributing as expected, it will be brought up immediately and addressed through coaching and training.

Employees are allowed to have a financial interest in the success of the company through fair, open incentives that encourage team/portfolio performance and corporate success (such as equity and profit-sharing schemes).


Agile HR adoption is a gradual process. Your best option is to get assistance from knowledgeable professionals who can lead you through the process, regardless of whether you’re thinking about the move as a part of an entire organizational change or whether it’s more narrowly focused. Check out the online Agile training to learn more.

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