Major Update SAFe 6.0

Major Update SAFe 6.0

On Wednesday, 15 March 2023, the Scaled Agile Framework, conceived in 2011, entered its tenth iteration and brought with it many great updates.

We would like to briefly summarise these in the following article.

gets an even more important role in the new update of the SAFe framework. The Scrum Master is now also called Team Coach. He is still allowed to identify disturbances (so-called dysfunctions) in the team and to counter them cooperatively. When it comes to remedying them, the main focus is on Patrick Lencioni's five stages (trust, conflict, commitment, responsibility, carelessness). However, Lencioni describes his facts for a C-level team, and thus focuses exclusively on top management!

Since the highest management level alone is not sufficient to carry out a successful agile transformation on its own, SAFe also provides the "Leading in the Digital Age" programme. This is specifically designed for middle management in organisations. For us as astute observers, it is evident that more and more people in a company are being called upon to actively lead.In the extensive reading canon of the SAFe framework, there is a book by David Marquet called "Turn the ship around".This reflects a leader-leader dynamic in which each person is given a "why" and an intention is convincingly stated. The purpose is to enable each individual to take ownership on their own initiative.

We at eggs unimedia have also been aware of this for some time, which is why we will be holding our "Agile Leadership Basic" course at team level in May 2023. We are really looking forward to it!

Furthermore, the SAFe Core Values have evolved. Build-in Quality has moved directly into the Big Picture and is now seen closer to the team level. This gives the team greater responsibility to consider quality. Middle management at train level can therefore be relieved. The Shift Learning Left is also new: problems should be addressed at an early stage so that no greater effort is required later to rectify them. The Shift Left will also be prominently featured in our webcast "Using SAFe the right way" (on 26 April 2023).

SAFe is also increasingly decoupling itself from traditional management terminology. The concept of the classic "programme" has completely disappeared from version 6.0. According to the old way of thinking, a "programme" consists of several projects. However, since it is more practical today to think in terms of products, the use of language has been adapted accordingly. The train and product structure is now firmly interwoven and there is no need to pay attention to programme execution.

There is also an increased focus on respect for people. Not only from a leadership point of view, people are increasingly taken into account. Long-term customer relationships should also be taken into account, as well as diversity of people and opinions. At eggs unimedia, we have been thinking along these lines ever since the company was founded, which has brought us high customer satisfaction, long-term success and intensive employee commitment for years.


In order to reflect the international success of the Scaled Agile Framework, the content was already translated into various national languages last year. The Asian market, and especially the Chinese market, is becoming more and more important. The fourth Core Value is called Relentless Improvement. Behind this is the Western view of developing in one direction. In the Confucian world, it is more understood as a cyclical thinking towards perfection. Therefore, it is not surprising that "perfection" is striven for in the new Lean Thinking principles. We understand it as the cultural inclusion of an emerging world power.

Another new aspect is the so-called "flow". SAFe wants to focus our attention on the fact that the Agile release trains are now established, but that they should continue to be optimised for the best possible value. This of course includes eliminating bottlenecks and minimising dependencies. It is exciting to note that work in flow according to Mihály Csíkszentmihályi (pronounced Mihai Chick-Cent-Mihai) is now also being taken into account. Flow is flow on all levels, including concentrated work over hours that makes you forget time and space.

From the top management perspective, the objectives and key results are now finally being mapped in the big picture. John Doerr's methodology, which brought phenomenal success to Google, for example, is also becoming increasingly important in everyday product work. Perhaps we will see the OKRs again in the Agile Product Management course, which has not yet been designed, because SAFe now involves middle management more strongly. Moreover, we can already note that the team level is not ignored in Doerr's book Measure what matters. The team level can be accurately derived from the strategic issues of higher management. The obvious conclusion is with Team PI Objectives and OKRs. Since these objectives are formulated during PI planning, SAFe advises against forming OKRs from them. These require careful consideration and therefore more time.

I would like to close the article with the most important point for the future. SAFe takes artificial intelligence into account and has dedicated an entire section to it (AI: Artificial Intelligence).

Many companies are currently investing in AI without knowing exactly why they need it. That is why SAFe now offers tools for decision-making. Because only when the "why" is clear can an accurate implementation - i.e. the how - take place. Only then can first-class business solutions be offered that drastically improve the reach of companies.

Thanks for reading, Yours Thomas – SAFe Practice* Consultant (SPC) *Program no longer exists.