SAFe 6.0 – An introduction in a nutshell


SAFe 6.0 Theme 1: Introduction of Business Agility Value Streams (BAVS)

As per the definition of Business Agility, it is the ability to compete and thrive in the digital age by quickly responding to market changes and emerging opportunities with innovative, digitally-enabled business solutions.

The newly introduced BAVS has been added to the top of the Big Picture, leading the way for competing and thriving in the digital age. It helps organizations quickly respond to market changes and emerging opportunities with innovative, digitally-enabled business solutions.

SAFe 6.0 Theme 2 : Clarification of Responsibilities for different Roles to ensure transparency

Nothing beats an Agile Team, and further enhancing performance requires clearer and more explicit responsibilities for each SAFe role. New and improved guidance is needed to help people improve their job performance and better support the organization’s goals.

SAFe 6.0 Theme 3: Flow improvement within the system (Organization & Teams)

Understanding the role of flow in SAFe 6.0

SAFe has several vital components which manage, control and influence its implementation. It has become more significant and mandatory in today’s digital age. In the previous versions of SAFe, flow was inherently part of all workflows but it remained confined to a principle and were highlighted through various Kanban boards only at all levels. With the introduction of SAFe 6.0, the flow is clearly visible and defined at all levels as discussed below.

Some more info about flow

The four new flow types are – Team Flow, ART Flow, Solution Train Flow, and Portfolio Flow. The 8 flow accelerators also offer a set of techniques that will help in addressing, optimizing, and debugging issues with a continuous value flow for a specific level.

SAFe 6.0 also introduces 8 common properties of value flow and also introduces 8 related flow accelerators. This can make the value flow faster. Moreover, SAFe Scrum, SAFe Team Kanban, Built-in Quality, and Value Stream Management articles will incorporate flow directly into the team’s daily work. It will offer better clarity, cooperation, and efficiency, assisting the organization and teams to improve.

SAFe 6.0 Theme 4: Business Agility across various parts of the organization

Achieving Business Agility doesn’t mean that only Software Development Teams are responsive enough towards any but other parts of the organization are equally and simultaneously should do the same. Also, as per the System Thinking approach, every part of the system should be optimized to let the system perform effectively and as a whole.

This is also significant from the organization perspective as it exposes the various chinks in the armor and highlights the areas & teams that need improvement.

With Business and Technology crossing boundaries and realms almost for all the business in today’s competitive world, this version has introduced new business and technology patterns including business-enabled ARTs, launching business trains, creating an Agile executive team, applying SAFe to other business functions, and combining development and operational value streams within the same portfolio. Each is described in the following paragraphs.

SAFe 6.0 Theme 5:  ABC (AI, Big Data & Cloud) from the Technology World inclusion and purpose

In today’s competitive world, where technology is the backbone of every industry and domain, SAFe has introduced three innovative technologies that provide more power to the business with their usage at different levels in the framework: AI, Big Data, and Cloud. There are three new articles and icons on the BP:

AI (Artificial intelligence) – As per the definition of AI, which means simulation of human intelligence in processes and systems, this icon has been added to the spanning palette. With its predictive analysis capability, it can help the organizations, both portfolio and the teams, to take decisions based on the insights provided by this technology.

Big Data – Big data analytics helps organizations harness their data and use it to identify new opportunities. That, in turn, leads to smarter business moves, more efficient operations, higher profits and happier customers. It is a great resource for driving smart business decisions and changes as well. Few benefits that are observed with Big Data are smarter recommendations and better audience targeting, Data Driven Innovation and improved Business Operations

Cloud – Cloud computing delivers computing services over the internet. Small businesses have on-demand access to web-based applications, data storage, processing, and other services. Cloud computing services include infrastructure, platform and software as a service. Cloud computing makes collaboration a simple process. Team members can view and share information easily and securely across a cloud-based platform. Some cloud-based services even provide collaborative social spaces to connect employees across your organization, therefore increasing interest and engagement.

SAFe 6.0 Theme 6:  Alignment for better outcomes through OKRs and Measure and Grow

While Measure and Grow already existed in the previous version (SAFe 5.0), the recent 6.0 version has introduced OKR so that alignment between strategy and executuon can be maintained.

The content includes SAFe’s three measurement domains (Outcomes, Flow, and Competency), This approach enables measuring progress toward business agility at all levels of SAFe. The insights they provide support better decision-making and help identify opportunities for improvement.

Defining business outcomes for epics and Lean business cases – Use OKRs to help to uncover potential Epics for entry into the Portfolio Kanban system.

Defining epics with OKRs definition provides clarity for the desired business outputs and outcomes. Setting improvement goals for the SAFe transformation – Applying OKRs can be used to measure the success of a SAFe change program.


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