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Agile POD team services

POD teams are the fastest around, blending expertise and flexibility to elevate your product development. This powerhouse framework propels companies — no matter new or seasoned — to the top tiers of the market quickly and efficiently.

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What is a POD in Agile?

PODs, short for “product-oriented delivery,” are small cross-functional teams structured to achieve specific business goals. These “scrum teams,” often called “squads,” operate within an Agile framework for greater independence, collaboration, and operational efficiency.

37%
37%
2020
86%
86%
2024

The impact of Agile PODs

Agile methodology has been quickly incorporated into software companies. At the start of the decade, Agile adoption grew from 37 percent to 86 percent in four years. And with good reason.

Agile teams are nearly 25 percent more productive than non-agile counterparts and 50 percent faster to market. This translates into direct financial benefits: Companies that have adopted Agile reported an average 60 percent increase in revenue and profit.

Agile teams mean:
60%Increase in revenue
50%Faster time to market
25%More productive teams

Key characteristics and features of Agile PODs

Cross-functional composition

Agile PODs are compact, but their squad members have all the skills needed to complete the project from start to finish without depending on external resources.

A POD will feature roles such as developers, testers, designers, and sometimes product owners and business analysts.

Self-organizing

Squads are empowered to decide how they work rather than being directed by managers outside the team.

This autonomy is crucial for PODs to execute quickly and pivot without delay if circumstances change.

Delivery-oriented

Each POD is aligned with specific business goals, and each task has clear value.

Work is broken down into small, manageable increments that can be completed and delivered quickly, allowing regular feedback and adjustments.

Collaborative culture

Agile PODs work closely together, often co-locating in the same physical space.

Their close-knit interaction fosters the strong team dynamic characteristic of PODs and supports effective problem-solving.

Iterative development

Following Agile principles, PODs operate in short cycles or sprints. 

Sprints enable PODs to absorb what works and discard what doesn’t, learning quickly to respond to changes in customer needs, market conditions, or project scope with minimal disruption.

Continuous improvement

Agile PODs regularly reflect on their processes, successes, and failures to continually enhance their effectiveness.

Sprint retrospectives support this learning mindset. These discussion routines are embedded into Agile development so squads can pinpoint what can be improved for the next iteration.

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Want to learn more about POD teams?

Our experts are on standby.

Benefits of the POD delivery model

PODs are at their best when your project requirements are complex to define. Vention PODs match flexibility and collaboration to suggest benefits you might have yet to consider. You can expect:

Increased flexibility

Flexibility is the core tenet of all Agile teams, including PODs. These squads are structured to allow for extra responsiveness to changes in project requirements, market conditions, or customer feedback.

Improved focus

PODs keep a high level of productivity when laser-focused on just a few tasks or goals or a larger project. This dedicated nature prevents them from spreading too thin. 

Top-notch innovation

Who is responsible for prioritizing work in an Agile POD? It depends on the POD. The horizontal hierarchy of a POD in Agile stimulates intense collaborative efforts, with team members empowered to suggest and experiment with new ideas.

Higher customer satisfaction

PODs involve stakeholders, including customers, in the development process to consider their feedback for adjustments. With a direct line of communication, the final product becomes closely aligned with its users’ intended needs and expectations.

Faster time to market

With their continuous integration and delivery of new features, the sleek development cycles of Agile PODs naturally translate to a faster time to market.

Built-in scalability

While each POD can operate independently on different facets of a project, the model is inherently scalable. Organizations can adjust the number of PODs based on project size and complexity without significant disruptions in workflow or productivity.

Agile PODs vs Scrum teams

Choosing between an Agile POD and a Scrum team depends on project requirements and the company’s culture. Scrum teams offer a structured approach with clear roles, tasks, and iterations. Conversely, Agile PODs are more flexible, scalable, and focused on outcomes rather than how to achieve them.

Agile POD

Scrum team

Composition

Agile POD

A cross-functional team without strictly defined roles. Includes all necessary skills to complete a project

Scrum team

Defined roles (product owner, scrum master, development team) with specific responsibilities.

Flexibility

Agile POD

High degree of autonomy and flexibility. Self-organizes and makes decisions internally based on deliverables and outcomes.

Scrum team

Follows a structured approach with set iterations (sprints) and ceremonies (planning, reviews, retrospectives.)

Focused on

Agile POD

Delivering specific business outcomes or project goals.

Scrum team

Completing a set of pre-defined work items from the product backlog during each sprint.

Scalability

Agile POD

Designed to be scalable across multiple projects or components of a project.

Scrum team

Can be scalable, but it is primarily interested in the efficiency and effectiveness within the Scrum framework.

Project management

Agile POD

Caters to overall deliverables and outcomes.

Scrum team

Detailed method for managing projects through sprints and product backlogs.

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Our Agile POD team structure

Option #1: The core pod

Option #2: The extended pod

How it works

Option #1: The core pod

The best PODs are self-sufficient. In this model, your Agile POD team works with minimal input to deliver your request and scale as needed.

Option #2: The extended pod

Think of this model as the POD+. It allows scaling beyond the main POD, offering experts in ancillary fields such as DevOps, SecOps, cyber security, data science, and AI/ML.

Team structure

Option #1: The core pod

  • Tech lead
  • 2-3 engineers
  • AQA / QA
  • Project coordinator

Option #2: The extended pod

  • Tech lead
  • 2-3 engineers
  • AQA / QA
  • Project coordinator
  • Technical specialists
  • Designers
  • BAs

PODs: when and where to apply?

Think of an Agile POD definition in two terms: fast and flexible. Looking for a short time-to-market? PODs are a great bet. Need to brainstorm extra possible features for that project? PODs to the rescue. The rigidity and slow response times of traditional management won’t cut it? POD it away.

Complex projects

When project requirements are expected to change over time, a small Agile team such as POD is the best option to enable quick pivots — especially if the project involves multiple disciplines or technologies.

Fast-paced industries

With their capacity to quickly adapt and innovate, PODs are a must in sectors where market demands and technology evolve rapidly, such as fintech, e-commerce, and digital services.

Startups and scale-ups

For startups and growing businesses that need responsiveness to market feedback, the agility of POD teams accelerates product development cycles and keeps the pace up.

Distributed operations

When teams are distributed across geographical locations, an Agile POD structure can help them work autonomously while staying aligned with the company’s goals.

R&D innovation

The interdisciplinary approach of POD teams suits any project well with an innovative backbone, as squads are incentivized to solve challenges creatively.

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Still trying to decide whether Agile is the best model for you?

There’s a lot more to PODs than meets the eye.

The challenges and solutions of Agile PODs

No work model is a silver bullet, and PODs aren’t an exception. However, ensuring that your POD team operates at full steam is more manageable than one might expect.

Here’s your checklist:

Overcoming initial reservations

If the POD comprises professionals who didn’t know each other previously, it needs rapport-building activities to unlock its full potential. Pair programming and cross-training are great tools for sharing knowledge and harmonizing work styles.

Coordination across PODs

Centralized communication tools and platforms work best to facilitate seamless interaction between PODs. Regular inter-POD meetings or sync-ups are also advised to discuss dependencies and coordinate efforts.

Alignment with project goals

It’s crucial to regularly revisit the project's goals and objectives with all PODs. For example, assigning a role within PODs to align daily work with strategic goals and keeping track of critical results to stay focused on overarching targets.

Scalability and resource allocation

Flexible resource allocation models adapt better to changing project needs. A central management team can monitor workloads and redistribute resources to ensure balance and prevent burnout.

Consistency and quality control

Standardized processes and quality guidelines across all PODs are essential. CI/CD pipelines, automated testing, and regular code reviews and audits are best practices across industries to maintain quality and adherence to standards.

Success stories of POD implementation

Deloitte and HashedIn

Deloitte's acquisition of HashedIn Technologies showcases a strategic move towards adopting pod-based agile methodologies to speed up cloud innovation and digital transformation.

This partnership highlights the efficiency of agile POD services in delivering cloud apps and solutions at a pace traditional methods cannot match.

Atlassian's marketing team adopted agile PODs to address the challenges of scaling and complexity in marketing operations.

By organizing work streams into pods that included core members, part-time specialists, and leaders, Atlassian underscored the need to find the sweet spot between rigidness and flexibility in organizational structures to maintain effectiveness at scale.

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Capgemini outlines a comprehensive approach to designing and implementing a POD-based DevOps operating model.

This model emphasizes a "you build it, you run it" philosophy, where POD teams are responsible for a product from its inception to deployment and support. The POD structure in Agile includes dedicated roles confined to a POD, shared roles across PODs, and Centers of Excellence (CoEs) for establishing standards and best practices.

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HubSpot discusses the POD model as an extension of the principles of DevOps, increasing efficiency by organizing larger development teams into smaller, autonomous units.

This model breaks down extensive project timelines into smaller sprints for incremental deliverables, which are made faster by rearranging the necessary disciplines into cohesive units.

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FDM Group follows a “build, deploy, manage” model, adhering to the Scrum framework with roles like product owner and scrum master.

To speed up their project delivery while fostering a collaborative approach, FDM runs a variety of agile PODs focusing on digital UI/UX, data-centric machine learning, data protection, agile architecture, and data modeling.

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How can we implement your development POD teams?

01

Assessing client needs

We work with our clients to assess their current infrastructure, organizational culture, and processes, as well as team skill sets and dynamics. This assessment determines their readiness for Agile PODs and helps us tailor the model effectively.

02

Customizing Agile POD design

Based on the assessment, we design customized Agile POD solutions that align with your goals, challenges, and project needs. We select the right mix of skills for each POD, determine their optimal size, and define the team’s responsibilities.

03

Training and specialized coaching

Vention offers training and coaching services to equip clients' teams with the necessary Agile skills and mindset. This covers Agile methodologies, collaboration and communication tools, and best practices for working within a POD structure team.

04

Implementing collaboration tools

Our clients receive expert advice in selecting and implementing the right collaboration tools, complete with project management solutions to facilitate the back-and-forth among POD members and across different PODs.

05

Measuring performance and governance

We assist clients in setting up governance structures and performance metrics to monitor and measure the success of their Agile PODs. Well-defined KPIs, building reporting systems, and regular review and feedback mechanisms are included.

06

Scaling and adaptation

Our experts also provide aid in scaling the POD agile model up or down based on project demands and outcomes. This includes guidance on adjusting team compositions, processes, and tools as clients gain insight into what works best for their organization.

07

Tailored solutions for unique challenges

We understand the unique challenges clients face in implementing Agile PODs. Our tailored solutions, consultancy, and support address these issues for a smooth, successful transition to the POD model.

Why team up with Vention?

20+

Years of experience in software development

3000

Tech experts on tap

15+

Delivery centers around the globe

30+

Business industries served

2

Weeks from contact to kickoff

$

Guidance on selecting stacks that reduce both initial and ongoing costs

Delivery on time, on budget, and on scope

An ISO 27001-certified company

Got a project in mind? Boost it with Vention’s Agile PODs.
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