Study by Nitor and the University of Helsinki: Finnish companies are pioneers of agility

Jan 30, 2019, 10:25 AM

Agile development has been there for software industry already quite some time. Increasing numbers of companies in other sectors have also been taking agile methods into use Nitor has been conducting a research together with the University of Helsinki on the current usage of agile methods in Finland. These are the initial results.

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The 'State of Agile in Finland' survey was implemented as an online questionnaire in November–December 2018, with responses by 118 people from various sectors. The majority of the respondents were from the ICT, financial and telecommunications sectors.

Around 24% of the respondents stated that agile methods are used across their company. Only 6% did not use agile methods at all. 89.5% had positive experiences of agile methods.

The most popular methods among the respondents were Scrum (88%), Kanban (81%), DevOps (62%), SAFe (61%) and Lean methods (52%).

”For me, the most interesting result of the survey was the fact that not a single company using agile methods has returned to the traditional model. This suggests that companies have received the rear benefits when using agile methods," says Maarit Laanti, founder of Nitor Delta, who has also written the world’s first PhD on agile methods in large scale.

The longest ongoing study of the usage of agile methods is annual the Version One State of Agile survey that is run globally. Last year 27% of the respondents to that survey came from Europe, but we do not know how many of those respondents were from Finland.

"If we compare the results of our research in Finland to the Version one State of Agile study, we can see that agile methods such as Scrum, Kanban and SAFe are more widely used in Finnish companies. Scrum is used in Finland by over 88% of the respondents, and Kanban nearly as much, by 81%. This makes a significant difference to Version One study, where the respective percentages were only 70% and 5%. Especially Kanban is more widely used here in Finland," Laanti comments.

More information on further analysis of the research by The University of Helsinki and Nitor will be published publish later on.

See also Maarit Laanti’s blog post with more detailed graphs (in Finnish).