SAFe (Scaled Agile Framework) provides a comprehensive structure that helps in achieving integration at multiple levels within a large-scale project or across multiple projects in an enterprise. Here are some key aspects through which SAFe delivers integration:
1. Cross-Team Coordination: At the Program Level, SAFe organizes Agile teams into an Agile Release Train (ART) — a long-lived team of Agile teams, which aligns teams to a common business and technology mission. Each ART is a virtual organization (typically 50 – 125 people) that plans, commits, and executes together.
2. Program Increments (PI): This is a timebox during which an Agile Release Train delivers incremental value in the form of working, tested software and systems. PIs provide a development timebox (defaulting to 10 weeks) that uses cadence and synchronization to facilitate planning, limiting WIP, provide for aggregation of value and assure consistent retrospectives.
3. System Demos: These are held at the end of every iteration to integrate and evaluate the current state of a working solution from an end-user’s perspective.
4. Solution Integration: In the Large Solution Level, multiple ARTs and suppliers have the role of defining, building and testing large and complex solutions. Here, Solution Train events provide integration points where the full solution can be integrated, evaluated, and adjusted.
5. Alignment with Business Goals: At the Portfolio Level, SAFe helps in aligning the strategy and execution by organizing solution development around the flow of value, through one or more value streams.
6. Architecture and Integration: SAFe promotes built-in quality practices which include Architectural Runway that supports the implementation of near-term features without excessive redesign and delay. Architectural Epics maintain the runway by extending the architectural capabilities of the solutions.
By applying these practices, SAFe helps to ensure the different parts of a large project or program are effectively integrated and aligned towards the organization’s overall goals.