Agile IT Infrastructure 1255494/ آ  2018-10-12آ  transformation projects can be executed

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  • IN DEGREE PROJECT INDUSTRIAL MANAGEMENT, SECOND CYCLE, 30 CREDITS

    , STOCKHOLM SWEDEN 2018

    Agile IT Infrastructure Transformation A Case Study of a Nordic Incumbent Telco

    TASMIAH AKHTER

    TOBIAS ÅKERLIND

    KTH ROYAL INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY SCHOOL OF INDUSTRIAL ENGINEERING AND MANAGEMENT

  • Agile IT Infrastructure Transformation A Case Study of a Nordic Incumbent Telco

    by

    Tasmiah Akhter Tobias Åkerlind

    Master of Science Thesis TRITA-ITM-EX 2018:213 KTH Industrial Engineering and Management

    Industrial Management SE-100 44 STOCKHOLM

  • Agil IT Infrastrukturs-Transformation En fallstudie av ett nordiskt telekombolag

    av

    Tasmiah Akhter Tobias Åkerlind

    Examensarbete TRITA-ITM-EX 2018:213 KTH Industriell teknik och management

    Industriell ekonomi och organisation SE-100 44 STOCKHOLM

  • Master of Science Thesis TRITA-ITM-EX 2018:213

    Agile IT Infrastructure Transformation A Case Study of a Nordic Incumbent Telco

    Tasmiah Akhter

    Tobias Åkerlind Approved

    2018-06-10 Examiner

    Anna Jerbrant Supervisor

    Matti Kaulio Commissioner

    Telia Company Contact person

    Malin Holmlund

    Abstract In a growing digital economy, where demands for network services and competition from various communication-over-the-network service providers intensify, telecommunication companies need to keep up in an ever-changing environment. As there is a need to reduce time-to-market for new network services, agility becomes restrained by having to operate within large legacy IT infrastructure environments.

    While agile methodologies in modern time have attained recognition in the field of software development for the way they help to manage changing customer demands and deliver early value in continuous increments, it is yet uncertain how agile methodologies can best be adopted for IT infrastructure deliveries to achieve the same purpose. Hence, this study explores how legacy IT infrastructure can be transformed in an agile way into modernized infrastructure landscapes supporting the business with fast enough development, release and deployment of new network services in demand. More precisely, the study investigates how larger IT infrastructure transformation projects can be executed by the help of agile practices.

    In order to investigate this, the study carries out a case study at Telia Company, a large Nordic incumbent telecommunications company possessing a big legacy of IT infrastructure. The study conducts internal interviews with Telia employees as well as external interviews with agile experts. Also, benchmarking is conducted with a well-established Swedish bank to better understand the challenges and how agile practices can best be applied.

    The study concludes that agile practices influenced by agile frameworks Scrum and Kanban can advantageously be applied at team level for more agile execution. However, the surrounding organizational business landscape greatly sets the limits for agile deliveries, due to dependencies on cooperation from the business side in the execution phase and the need to be aligned with business needs and stakeholder requirements.

  • Further, the study also shows that the application of agile practices at team level in combination with a close dialogue with stakeholders and a scaled agile approach requiring investing in automation, is the key for more agile infrastructure deliveries. In this way, aligned end-to-end delivery processes can be better developed and infrastructure needs better understood and implemented at the right time. As a contribution, the study proposes a model with inspiration from agile frameworks Scrum, Kanban and SAFe, for how this may work in practice.

    Key-words

    Agile, Agile methodologies, Scrum, Kanban, SAFe, Project management, IT infrastructure transformation, IT infrastructure, Telecom

  • Examensarbete TRITA-ITM-EX 2018:213

    Agil IT Infrastrukturs-Transformation En fallstudie av ett nordiskt telekombolag

    Tasmiah Akhter

    Tobias Åkerlind Godkänt

    2018-06-10 Examinator

    Anna Jerbrant Handledare

    Matti Kaulio Uppdragsgivare

    Telia Company Kontaktperson

    Malin Holmlund

    Sammanfattning I en växande digital ekonomi, kännetecknad av intensifierad efterfrågan på nätverkstjänster och konkurrens från diverse aktörer som erbjuder kommunikationstjänster över nätverket, behöver telekommunikationsföretag hålla uppe takten i den snabbföränderliga omgivningen. Samtidigt som det finns behov av att minska tid till marknad för nätverkstjänster, blir snabbheten återhållsam på grund av att man måste jobba i miljöer med stora IT infrastrukturs-arv.

    Agila metoder har i modern tid blivit erkända inom mjukvaruutveckling för hur de hjälper att hantera föränderliga kundbehov och kontinuerligt leverera tidigt värde inkrementellt. Dock råder det fortfarande ovisshet kring hur agila metoder kan tillämpas bäst inom IT infrastrukturs-leveranser för att uppnå samma ändamål. Följaktligen utforskar denna studie hur IT infrastrukturs-arv agilt kan bli transformerade till moderniserade infrastrukturs-landskap som stödjer verksamheten med tillräckligt snabb utveckling, lansering och spridning av efterfrågade nätverkstjänster. Mer exakt undersöker studien hur större IT infrastrukturs-projekt kan bli genomförda med hjälp av agila arbetssätt efter en initial projektplanering.

    För att undersöka detta genomförs en fallstudie på Telia Company, som är ett etablerat nordiskt telekommunikationsföretag och som har ett stort arv av IT-infrastruktur. Studien inkluderar interna intervjuer med Telia anställda såväl som externa intervjuer med agila experter. Även en benchmark- undersökning med en väletablerad svensk bank utförs för att bättre förstå utmaningarna och hur agila arbetssätt kan bli tillämpade på bästa sätt.

    Studien drar slutsatsen att agila arbetssätt med influens av de agila ramverken Scrum och Kanban med fördel kan bli tillämpade på team-nivå för mer agila verkställanden. Dock begränsas agila leveranser till stor del av det omgivande verksamhetslandskapet. Detta på grund av beroenden av

  • samarbeten från verksamheten i olika utförande-moment och behovet av att vara sammanvävd med verksamhetsbehov och intressentkrav i leveranserna.

    Sammanfattningsvis menar studien att tillämpningen av agila arbetssätt på team-nivå i kombination med en nära dialog med intressenter samt ett initiativ för att skala agilt, är nyckeln för mer agila infrastrukturs-leveranser. För att uppnå detta, krävs även investering inom automation. På så vis kan end-to-end-strukturerade leveransprocesser bli bättre utvecklade och infrastrukturs-behov bättre förstådda och implementerade i rätt tid. Som ett bidrag föreslår studien en modell för hur detta kan fungera i praktiken, med inspiration från de agila ramverken Scrum, Kanban och SAFe.

    Nyckelord

    Agil, Agila metoder, Scrum, Kanban, SAFe, Projektledning, IT infrastruktur transformation, IT infrastruktur, Telekom

  • Acknowledgement As this master’s thesis was carried out at a commissioner, Telia Company, it meant that the outcome of the study as well as our positive experience of the semester, was to be determined by our reception. In this sense, we want to extend a big thank you and appreciation to everyone at Telia somehow involved in our time at the company, for a warm and welcoming reception. It has been a truly learning and enjoyable experience. We especially want to thank Klas Erikson, Head of the IT Infra Transformation unit, for engaging in our work and being supportive. We want to thank Malin Holmlund, our supervisor at Telia, for helping us to reach out to interviewees, your availability for continuous questions and engagement for our work. We would also like to thank Ankita Deka for helping us with technical coordination and other good “Telia tips and tricks”. Your rescue was invaluable at the first Skype video conference. We would like to thank all three of you for inviting us to lunches and making us feel welcome at the department. Furthermore, we would like to thank all of the internal and external interviewees for valuable and interesting interviews as well as offering to help further if needed be. Moreover, we would like to thank HR for setting up the overall agenda, showing encouragement and arranging different kinds of gatherings. We would also like to thank our fellow master’s thesis students and managers at Telia attending the presentation sessions, for providing with interesting insights about what is going on in the company as well as giving valuable feedback and support for our study. Lastly, we would like to thank our fellow students at the department of Industrial Engineering and Management, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, for constructive feedback during the seminar series.

    Stockholm, June 2018 Tasmiah Akhter and Tobias Åkerlind

  • Table of Contents

    1 INTRODUCTION 1 1.1 Background 1 1.2 Problematization 2 1.3 Purpose 3 1.4 Research Questions 3 1.5 Delimitations 3 1.6 Expected Contribution 3 1.7 Commissioner 4 1.8 Disposition of the Thesis 6

    2 THEORETICAL FRAMING 8 2.1 Introduction to Agile 8 2.2 Scrum 12 2.3 Kanban 17 2.4 Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) 20