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What are PI Objectives?

StarAgilecalenderJuly 14, 2022book8 minseyes2063

We all can agree that having the SAFe program in the business is going to reap great results for the companies. But there is so much confusion when it comes to the Increment objectives related to SAFe. So today in this article we are going to touch on that part and give you a brief understanding of pi objectives. Because there is confusion surrounding them, there are many businesses that are reluctant to use them in the first place. These are the objectives that can be followed by the Agile team in the organization and give great results. So, we are going to explain all about it, what are its benefits, and how you can write great PI Objectives for your team as well. By the end of this blog, you will have confidence in this technique and you will try that out for your team. Further, we will be sharing the best place where you can look for SAFe Agile Training and give a head start on your career.

What are PI Objectives and why are they important?

PI stands for Program Increment, and these objectives are the brief of various technical as well as business goals involved in the business. They are the summarization of the aim of the agile training or team. These aims are needed to be reached in the forthcoming program increment. Usually, these objectives are generated when the team is going for the PI Planning phase in their project. These objectives are regarded as the goals that are needed to be met in the coming PI. There are various reasons that the teams are going for these objectives:

  1. When the need of having a mutual dialect is required between the business and the technical stakeholders, these objectives serve their purpose and they are very helpful in making sure that everyone is on the same page.
  2. These objectives are very helpful in making sure that the team has a vision and they are walking down the road of near team focus. 
  3. Using these objectives, it becomes possible for ART to make sure that they are evaluating its operation. 
  4. One of the major things that are part of the SAFe methodology is the Program Predictability Measure, and to achieve the business values, these PI objectives can be used. 
  5. The business needs to work with various teams and to make sure that the teams are communicating well with each other and towards the shared goal for the business, these pi objectives are very much needed to highlight those efforts and the value of those teams. 
  6. Using the PI Objectives in the team, it becomes easier for the team to highlight the dependencies that are arising in the team. With this, the coordination plan can be done on time which will be easier on the overall business.

When the PI Planning is going on for the team, the team is going to represent the new features and also plan the stories that are needed to be delivered to the team. The work that is discussed here will be known as the specific set of the PI objective. There are various things that go into this like the planning, knowledge, team’s capacity, knowing about the upcoming features and defining the stories that are present in the backlog of the team, and much more. This also requires summarizing the simple business terms so that everyone is able to comprehend those.

Also, if we talk about the number of PI Objectives that are needed to be defined for the team, there is no fixed rule for that. But usually, there might be 7-10 objectives that should suffice the purpose. The team needs to make sure that these are not too hard for the team to understand and they should also be in a good number for ART to process and review them. Maintaining those objectives is very much needed and very pivotal. We know that business and technical teams require something in the middle and this is where the PI Objectives come into play. They help in setting up sensible goals that will keep the businesses away from a high number of works in progress in the system. They will recognize them at the right time of the PI Planning phase and these objectives will help in building the work up.

How to write the correct PI Objectives for your team?

When it comes to writing the SAFe PI Objectives for the team, a lot of effort goes in and, in the end, it is all worth it. As they provide a clear understanding of what is needed to be done, they are needed to be drafted in such a way that everyone is able to know what to get from them. Below are some of the points that you can keep in your mind when you are going for the same:

Planning your objectives

If you are looking to have great results in the team, then having at least one PI objective for the agile team is needed. But before you begin the same, there are some questions you need to ask yourself and the team:

  • What and why do you want to achieve a certain goal in the PI?
  • How the team is going to walk on that path of achievement?

In order to be able to answer these questions, you need to know about the project in the deep. You need to familiarize yourself with the goal and scope of the project itself and understand its vision. The team needs to know about the capacities of their teams, their milestones, velocities, their competencies, and their dependencies. This will help in charting out the plan for achieving the goal of the project. Using these parameters, the team is able to analyze and provide the estimation for the upcoming stores and work. The time limit should be there to make sure that the objectives are achieved on time. Learning some pi objectives examples can be very helpful.

The main purpose of these pi objectives is to make sure that the focus is on helping the business owner or the user to implement the feature. One thing to be taken care of here is that these objectives are needed to be planned in such a way that you should get feedback on time. This will help in making changes on time and this will help in saving costs and risks in the future.

Creating your own objectives

Now that you have completed planning these objectives, you need to make sure that you have a summary of everything that is discussed and addressed, both technical as well as the business aspect of the goals to be achieved. It is needed that whatever you are going to write down in these lines, should be concise, understandable, and very specific. One of the things that you can do to make sure that the statements are clear is by using the SMART Rules. This stands for Specific and Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Bound. Now we will go by these rules one by one so that you can apply them in a better way.

  • Specific and Measurable: The objectives that are needed to be achieved in the team are needed to be quantified and very specific. To make sure that the team is going on the path to success, having constant feedback from the stakeholders becomes mandatory. 
  • Attainable: While setting the goal, it is needed to make sure that the goals are realistic and there should not be any ambiguity. If there are certain things, then they should be explained well. 
  • Relevant: One of the major things to look at in the PI Objectives is that they should align with the vision and goal of the overall project and should not deviate at any cost. 
  • Time-Bound: Having the time limit to meet these objectives will help the team to follow a schedule that will guarantee timely delivery of the deliverables.
  • Using this rule, you can have a better understanding of what is needed in the PI Objectives and how you can make them clear for the teams working on the project.

Assigning the business value

After you have written the PI Objectives for the team, the next and final step is to assign the business values to those objectives. This is given by the business owners that were part of the pi planning sessions. These values range from 1 to 10, and here 10 means the highest. These values are used by the business owners to give priority and severity to the objectives that are part of the team. The business value assignment will help the team to prioritize the objectives that are critical and this will keep the communication in a good sense among the team members.

If you are looking to give transparency and visibility to the project in your company, then going for these pi objectives can be the right way to do so. Using this, the teams are going to get on board and there will be coordination among the team. One thing to be noted here is that there might be pi objectives that do not meet the program increment. They can be evaluated and a decision to keep them in the backlog or remove them is made. This helps in reducing the excess work in progress in the team and also ensures that there is a continuous improvement in the project.

Committed and Uncommitted PI Objectives

SAFe PI objectives can be committed or uncommitted. They are present at either the team level or program level.

If we talk about the committed pi objectives, that are the objectives that the team is confident about reaching. But on the other hand, the objectives that seemed far stretched, are known as uncommitted objectives. There could be less confidence in those objectives because of various dependencies or other factors.

Conclusion

Setting the realistic pi objectives for the team can work wonders for the team as it gives them vision and a path to keep moving toward the success of the project. So, to make sure that you are writing the great objectives, follow the steps provided above. In this blog, we discussed what are pi objectives and why is it beneficial to have them in the team. Knowing the vision of the project and then having pi objectives to work on will boost the overall performance of the team.

If you are looking to learn more about the SAFe methodology and want to get a SAFe certification, then going for an online course can help you. With StarAgile, you are going to find the best teachers and the course material that helps you get up-to-date knowledge in this field. StarAgile has certified SAFe Agile Training which will help you pave your path for a future with guaranteed success.

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