Benefits and Challenges of Adopting SAFe - An Empirical Survey

Abheeshta Putta*, Ömer Uludağ, Maria Paasivaara, Shun Long Hong

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference article in proceedingsScientificpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
116 Downloads (Pure)


During the last two decades, turbulent business environments tempted firms to adopt agile methods to cope with the ever-changing customer demands. The success of agile methods in small and co-located teams inspired companies to apply them to large-scale endeavors. Agile scaling frameworks, such as the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe), have been proposed by practitioners to scale agile practices to large projects and enterprises. Companies are increasingly taking these frameworks into use. However, the number of quantitative empirical studies assessing the benefits and challenges of adopting the agile scaling frameworks is still limited. This paper starts filling in this gap by presenting the results from a survey of 100 industry participants around the world on their perception of the benefits and challenges of adopting the SAFe framework. Our results show that the SAFe adoption improves transparency, as well as collaboration and dependency management between agile teams. The most commonly mentioned challenges of the SAFe adoption are organizational politics, difficulties in establishing an agile mindset, change resistance, and team formation challenges.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAgile Processes in Software Engineering and Extreme Programming - 22nd International Conference on Agile Software Development, XP 2021, Proceedings
EditorsPeggy Gregory, Casper Lassenius, Xiaofeng Wang, Philippe Kruchten
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9783030780982
ISBN (Print)9783030780975
Publication statusPublished - 2021
MoE publication typeA4 Conference publication
EventInternational Conference on Agile Software Development - Virtual, Online, Denmark
Duration: 14 Jun 202118 Jun 2021
Conference number: 22

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Business Information Processing
Volume419 LNBIP
ISSN (Print)1865-1348
ISSN (Electronic)1865-1356


ConferenceInternational Conference on Agile Software Development
Abbreviated titleXP
CityVirtual, Online


  • Agile scaling frameworks
  • Large-scale agile software development
  • Scaled agile framework
  • Survey


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