3 signs that you need to transition to Lean Agile Procurement?


Why You Should Consider Lean Agile Procurement

In today’s fast-paced business environment, traditional procurement methods can often hinder progress and flexibility. Moving to Lean Agile Procurement can provide a significant competitive edge. This article explores key indicators that suggest it’s time to consider this transformative approach, along with practical advice and real-world examples to emphasize the urgency and benefits.

Signs It’s Time to Move to Lean Agile Procurement

1. Inability to Act on Feedback Due to Contractual Constraints

One of the most compelling reasons to shift to Lean Agile Procurement is the inability to act on feedback because of contractual limitations. Imagine you’re in a complex negotiation or building a sophisticated product, whether it’s materials, hardware, or software. Suddenly, you receive critical data that necessitates a change, but your current contracts prevent any adaptation.

Real-World Example

In my experience with various clients, particularly in software development, contracts written in a waterfall fashion often lock them into rigid requirements. Payment milestones tied to requirement sign-offs create a barrier to flexibility. As a result, change requests get mislabeled as bugs, leading to denial and delays. This inflexibility can cascade into a myriad of issues, ultimately affecting the entire project’s success.

Key Takeaway: If you’re frequently hitting roadblocks due to contractual terms, it’s a strong sign that Lean Agile Procurement could be beneficial. This approach fosters adaptability and responsiveness to change, crucial in today’s dynamic markets.

2. Lack of Transparency and Openness Between Partners

Another red flag is the absence of transparency and openness between partnering companies. Successful collaboration requires a foundation of trust, facilitated by clear legal constraints like non-disclosure agreements and well-defined contractual terms. These allow for honest, robust discussions about progress, challenges, and adaptations.

Practical Advice

Ensure that your contracts encourage open communication and regular feedback loops. This can significantly enhance your ability to respond to emerging circumstances, incorporate feedback, and learn collectively to deliver superior products.

Key Takeaway: If you find that lack of openness is stifling your flexibility and responsiveness, it’s time to consider Lean Agile Procurement. This methodology promotes a culture of transparency and collaboration, essential for agile success.

3. The Partnership Doesn’t Feel Right

Sometimes, it’s more about a feeling than concrete issues. If the relationship with your partners feels strained or adversarial, it’s a clear indicator that something isn’t working.

Signs of a Troubled Partnership

  • Tension and conflict during interactions
  • Lack of mutual engagement
  • Ineffective feedback mechanisms
  • Inflexibility in adapting to changes

Key Takeaway: If it feels like you and your partners are not aligned or working collaboratively, Lean Agile Procurement can help realign your relationship. It emphasizes partnership and joint effort towards maximizing value delivery.

Promoting a Sense of Urgency

Recognizing these signs is crucial, but equally important is understanding why you should act now.

Maximizing Value Delivery

Lean Agile Procurement focuses on delivering maximum value to consumers and customers. By fostering a collaborative environment, it ensures that all parties are working towards the same goal, which is crucial for achieving a high return on investment (ROI).

Enabling Organizational Capability

To thrive in a competitive market, your organization needs cross-functional teams with the capability to adapt and respond swiftly. Lean Agile Procurement provides the framework to build such teams, enhancing your overall efficiency and effectiveness.

Benefits of Lean Agile Procurement

Enhanced Collaboration

By adopting Lean Agile Procurement, you foster a culture of collaboration. This approach encourages continuous communication and feedback, leading to more innovative solutions and improved project outcomes.

Increased Flexibility

Traditional procurement methods can be rigid and slow to adapt. Lean Agile Procurement, on the other hand, allows for greater flexibility, enabling you to pivot quickly in response to new information or changing market conditions.

Better Risk Management

With Lean Agile Procurement, risk management becomes more proactive. Regular check-ins and feedback loops help identify and address potential issues before they escalate, ensuring smoother project execution.

How to Implement Lean Agile Procurement

Step 1: Evaluate Current Contracts

Begin by reviewing your existing contracts to identify areas where rigidity is causing issues. Look for terms that limit flexibility and adaptability.

Step 2: Foster a Culture of Openness

Work on building a culture that values transparency and open communication. This might involve revising your contractual agreements to include clauses that encourage regular feedback and honest discussions.

Step 3: Train Your Teams

Invest in training your teams on Lean Agile principles. Ensure they understand the importance of collaboration, continuous improvement, and customer-centric delivery.

Step 4: Establish Clear Metrics

Define clear metrics to measure the success of your Lean Agile Procurement implementation. This could include metrics related to project delivery times, cost savings, and customer satisfaction.

Step 5: Continuous Improvement

Lean Agile Procurement is not a one-time change but a continuous journey. Regularly review your processes and make adjustments based on feedback and new insights.


Transitioning to Lean Agile Procurement can seem daunting, but the benefits far outweigh the challenges. By recognizing the signs that it’s time to make the shift and understanding the urgency, you can position your organization for greater success. Enhanced collaboration, increased flexibility, and better risk management are just a few of the advantages you’ll experience. Start your journey today and unlock the full potential of Lean Agile Procurement for your organization.

Remember: In today’s fast-paced world, adaptability is key. Don’t let outdated procurement methods hold you back. Embrace Lean Agile Procurement and lead your organization to new heights. 🚀

Connect with Advanced Product Delivery.

APD offer private, tailored training courses as well as business agility and coaching. Our public training courses are delivered by practicing Agilists: Product Owners, Scrum Masters and coaches who are expert trainers and facilitators.

Whether you are looking to become a #scrummaster or #agilecoach, we have a range of internationally certified and recognised #agiletraining courses that are perfect for you. Visit Professional Scrum Training courses for more information.

If you are looking for professional, deeply experienced and skilled #agilecoaches and #agileconsultants to help you transition from traditional #projectmanagement to #agile #productdevelopment, we’ve got the ideal team to help you make that transition a success. Visit our Agile Coaching section to find out more about us.

If you have identified Lean Agile Procurement as a great opportunity to enhance #agility within your organization, visit the Lean Agile Procurement Training course or Lean Agile Procurement coaching page.

#agile #scrum #agilecoach #agileconsultant #agiletraining #agilescrumtraining #scrumtraining #scrumcertification #scrummaster #productowner #leanagileprocurement #apd #businessagility #organizationalagility #productdevelopment #projectmanagement #agileprojectmanagement #agileproductdevelopment

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