This year’s World Agility Forum nominated PickMe for the Best Agile Transformation Initiative award, placing this innovative ride hailing company amongst the world’s most agile global giants such as FedEx and Holubuva. Although PickMe did not bag the award this year, it was the only Sri Lankan organisation picked by the Forum to compete against these conglomerates for their agile thinking.
Speaking about the nomination, Chief Executive Officer of PickMe, Zulfer Jiffry says the feat was possible because of the capability of the PickMe app to pivot and expand. “Before COVID-19 became a local phenomenon, customers used our app mostly for travelling and food deliveries. But in order to stay relevant to our employees, partners, community and government in these pandemic times, we had to come up with a viable plan which would benefit all stakeholders. Our digital platform was resilient and pivotal which meant the system just needed a little tweaking from pre-pandemic structures to get into crisis-mode. We had to innovate, and that’s what we all did from Engineering to Operations, and as the saying goes, necessity is the mother of all inventions. We found ourselves thinking through the processes of human consumption under lockdown conditions and by applying digital solutions, we came up with the most relevant applications to fit this changed environment. We launched several new services that are now invaluable to our customers. While we did all this with an absolutely dedicated team, it is heartening to gain recognition for our work by a prestigious entity like the World Agility Forum who thought us worthy to compete against the world’s most agile and innovative organisations.”
The World Agility Forum is an annual event that brings together organisations and their leaders who excel in using agile thinking to reinvent their businesses, and take them to greater heights. The selection criteria for nominees for the ‘Best Agile Transformation Initiative’ award is their visible transformation at all levels through the application of an agile mindset. PickMe presented a case study to the Forum’s jury on their comprehensive product definition covering several key aspects, defining the value it generates to stakeholders through the use of agile principles. There were only 2 other nominees in this category, competing alongside PickMe i.e. FedEx Express Europe and Holubuva from the Czech Republic.
Speaking of the nomination, Chief Technology Officer of PickMe, Mithila Somasiri, said, “Over the past two years, we’ve actively worked towards improving our development processes by incorporating agile practices. The idea of being agile refers to organising large groups of people into effective teams. In doing so, allowing them to operate in a dynamic environment, without losing productivity, and responding to changes rapidly. On paper, it sounds simple but in practice, it’s a difficult thing to pull off because it’s not something that can be done overnight. It’s an ongoing journey, one that PickMe had already embarked on in terms of our concepts and end to end agile development.”
We are excited and proud that our hard work culminated in our competing at an international forum against global names. To be the first Sri Lankan company nominated for this award at the World Agility Forum is an outstanding achievement and encourages us to do more to bring home a win in the future.”
Mithila added that the agility concept is all about trusting people and the process and respecting delivery commitments. “It is this discipline that enables us to deliver more in an ever-changing environment. Our Marketplace feature, hosts 500+ merchants and has served over 1 million households islandwide since its launch. Alongside this was PickMe Flash, the on-demand delivery service to transfer goods on the platform, which has become a pillar of support for small businesses. Other services like PickMe Trucks also quickly scaled up and hit record milestones evolving to meet the changing needs of our customers.”
The Chief Technology Officer says their development teams began adopting the methodology, and the company’s senior leadership supported it all the way. “This was a crucial factor in our transformation, by the end of 2020, we had already spent a year redefining our processes, which are now strictly calibrated, and fine tuned to respond to rapid changes in the market.”