Agile Working: A Comprehensive Guide For The Modern Workplace

On a typical workday, Claudie wakes early, gets ready, and joins the rush hour traffic to get to the office, clocks in at 9 am, and tries to get her balance to deliver on her assigned tasks.

She clocks out at 5 pm and joins the traffic back home. She drags herself to bed to get some rest. Rinse, repeat monthly.

Bertha on the other hand wakes up and saunters to her work office in her living room or a café that’s a 10-minute walking distance from her house. Logs into her laptop and connects virtually with her colleagues.

Once a month, she chooses to go to the office to catch up with colleagues on the progress of their projects. And guess what? She’s crushing her work targets.

Who would you rather be? Claudia clinging to the traditional working way or Bertha embracing Agile working? Your guess is as good as mine.

This article looks into the Agile working model, its benefits, and steps to overcoming obstacles to Agile working.

What is Agile Working?

Agile working refers to a flexible approach to work that allows employees to work in a way that best suits their needs, while also meeting the needs of the business.

This approach is based on the belief that work is not a place but an activity. It involves creating a working environment that is adaptable and allows for a greater degree of autonomy and decision-making by employees.

Essentially, Agile working is bringing people, processes, connectivity, technology, time, and place together to find the most appropriate and effective way of working to carry out a particular task.

It involves maximum flexibility and minimum constraints focusing on outcomes rather than processes or procedures and encourages collaboration and communication between team members.

It can also involve the use of technology to enable remote working, flexible hours, and other ways of working that are designed to support a better work-life balance.

Agile working is about being ready to change the way we work from it’s the working hours, the physical workplace, the technology we use, and the way we work together, to the way our work is done.

It encourages flexibility, collaboration, and adaptability and is a way of working that many companies are adopting in order to stay competitive and efficient in a rapidly changing business environment.

Agile Working vs Traditional Methods

The world is changing rapidly driven by technology, globalization, or response to specific crises. Hence the need for the workplace to constantly adapt in order to remain efficient and competitive.

In a traditional work setting, employees are required to be at the office at 9 am or other agreed clock-in time, stationed at their desks, take directions from their managers, and deliver based on instructions issued.

Today, many people are willing to work from home or have flexible working hours. This type of working environment has been coined Agile working.

Recall the examples of Bertha and Claudia. They both represent the widening difference between the new Agile working and the traditional work way.

Agile working and traditional working refer to two different approaches to how work is organized and carried out within a company or organization. Some key differences between the two models are:


Agile working emphasizes flexibility and adaptability, while traditional working tends to be more rigid and hierarchical.

Work-Life Balance

Agile working often places a greater emphasis on work-life balance and empowering employees to manage their own schedules, while traditional working may prioritize strict schedules and working long hours.


Agile working promotes open and collaborative communication between team members, while traditional working often involves a more top-down approach to communication.


Agile working focuses on achieving specific goals and outcomes, while traditional working is often more focused on completing tasks according to a predetermined plan or schedule.


Agile working often relies on technology to facilitate communication and collaboration, while traditional working may rely more on in-person meetings and face-to-face communication.

Benefits of Agile Working

Agile working has become increasingly popular in recent years, as businesses have sought to become more flexible and responsive to changing market conditions.

It has been particularly popular among tech companies and startups but is now being adopted by a wide range of industries and businesses.

The benefits of Agile working can be both for employees and employers. Some of the benefits include:

Increased Productivity

One of the main benefits of Agile working is that it can lead to increased productivity as it focuses on creating a more efficient work environment.

Agile teams work in short, focused sprints, which can help to keep everyone on task and reduce distractions.

By allowing employees to work in a way that suits them best, they can focus on the tasks that are most important to them and work at their own pace.

This can lead to greater efficiency and productivity as the employees are able to prioritize their work and avoid distractions.

Improved Work-Life Balance

Agile working can also benefit employees by improving their work-life balance.

By allowing them to work from home or choose their working hours, they can better balance their work commitments with their personal lives.

This can help to reduce stress and improve overall well-being, leading to happier and more motivated employees.

Cost Saving

Saving costs is a big deal considering the inflation ravaging economies all over the world.

By allowing employees to work from home or at their best fit, companies can cut costs on office workspace and other office infrastructure and operate more efficiently.

Improved Collaboration

Agile working can also improve collaboration among team members.

By using online tools and communication platforms, people stay connected and work more seamlessly, regardless of their location helping to promote a more collaborative and inclusive working culture.

Better Employee Retention

Agile working can help to increase employee engagement as it allows employees to work in a way that suits their individual needs and preferences.

This can lead to higher levels of job satisfaction and a greater sense of ownership and commitment to the success of the project.

By offering flexible working arrangements, companies can show that they value their employees and are committed to their well-being and work-life balance creating a more loyal and engaged workforce, which can lead to better business results.

Greater Flexibility

Agile working allows employees to work in a way that suits their individual needs and preferences.

This can include flexible hours, working from home or other remote locations, and the ability to work on a variety of projects.

By allowing people to work from anywhere and anytime, companies can tap into a wider pool of talent and create more diverse and inclusive teams.

This can help to promote innovation and creativity, as people with different backgrounds and perspectives come together to solve problems and drive progress.

Challenges to Agile Working

While agile working offers many benefits as mentioned above, it also presents some unique challenges that you need to be aware of.

Below are some of the challenges to Agile working:

Managing Workloads

One of the main challenges of Agile working is being able to manage workloads. With flexible working arrangements, it can be difficult to monitor and manage the workload of each team member.

This can lead to overworked employees or missed deadlines, which can impact the overall success of the project

Maintaining Company Culture

Agile working can also present a challenge in maintaining company culture.

When teams are dispersed across different locations and work on different schedules, it can be difficult to maintain a sense of shared values and purpose leading to a lack of motivation, disengagement, and low morale.

Communication and Collaboration

When teams are dispersed across different locations and time zones, it can be difficult to stay connected and work together effectively.

This can lead to miscommunication, misunderstandings, and delays in project delivery.

Overcoming the Challenges to Agile Working

Now you have an idea of some of the challenges faced with AGile working, here are a few tips to overcoming them:

Establish Clear Expectations

It’s especially important to establish clear expectations and deadlines for each team member.

Regular check-ins and progress updates can help managers stay on top of each team member’s workload and ensure that everyone is working towards the same goal.

Establish Clear Communication Protocols

Establish clear communication protocols and use online tools and platforms to facilitate collaboration.

Regular check-ins, video conferences, and online project management tools can help teams stay connected and work together seamlessly, regardless of location.

Establish Strong Company Culture

Establish a strong company culture and ensure that it’s communicated to all team members, regardless of location.

Regular team-building activities, company-wide events, and virtual social events can help create a sense of belonging to foster a shared sense of purpose.


There are different styles and methods when it comes to working and each has its appeal. When picking one for your organization, there’s no right or wrong. You just need to tailor it appropriately.

Agile working tends to be more adaptable, collaborative, and technology-driven; leading to increased productivity, employee retention, and overall business profitability and it’s certainly worth a try.

Gift Ezeafulukwe (CBAP® PMI-ACP® )
Gift Ezeafulukwe (CBAP® PMI-ACP® )

Business Analyst and Agile delivery professional with a proven track record of facilitating change and process improvement through initiatives and projects of value to stakeholders.

Deeply passionate about identifying opportunities and crafting strategies, business priorities, and objectives to solve business needs, positively impact ROI, and provide future growth opportunities.

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