Analytics: The Agile Way

  • 3h 43m
  • Phil Simon
  • John Wiley & Sons (US)
  • 2017

For decades now, companies big and small have embraced Agile software development methods. The rationale here is straightforward:

  • Why take one or two years to fully deploy a system, app, or website when so many things can and do go wrong?
  • Why try to cook one big batch and boil the ocean?
  • Why not cook many smaller batches?

Double that when the world changes faster than ever. Brass tacks: It's no coincidence that methods such as Scrum have exploded with no end in sight.

Yet, when developing and using analytics, many organizations paradoxically continue to think in terms of traditional, phase-gate IT projects. That is, they optimistically plan for six-month or year-long projects to launch dashboards, key performance indicators (KPIs), data-visualization tools, predictive models, and their ilk. Antiquated techniques abound. In so doing, these organizations bet--often incorrectly--that they will diligently gather every requirement and data source. In their conceit, they assume perfect conception, planning, and execution. Even if they pull off these enormous feats, it's usually a fool's errand for one simple fact the world is moving faster than ever.

This is insanity.

In Analytics: The Agile Way award-winning author Phil Simon shows how intelligent organizations such as Google, Nextdoor, and others are approaching contemporary analytics.

At a high level, the text will demonstrate how organizations are applying the same Agile techniques that software engineers and developers have successful used for years, but in a different area: analytics. In so doing, individuals at these smart companies can understand--and, most important, act upon--nascent opportunities far faster than their more traditional counterparts do. Using a combination of case studies, examples, and exercises, Analytics: The Agile Way demonstrates how this new mind-set affords tremendous opportunity for organizations willing to embrace uncertainty and move fast.

About the Author

Phil Simon (@philsimon) is a sought-after speaker and the award-winning author of eight books, most recently Analytics: The Agile Way. A recognized technology expert, he advises organizations on communications, strategy, data, analytics, and platforms. His contributions have been featured on Harvard Business Review, CNN, The New York Times, and many other sites. He teaches system design, analytics, and business intelligence at Arizona State University’s W. P. Carey School of Business.

To find out more about Phil and his books, go to

In this Book

  • Signs of the Times: Why Data and Analytics Are Dominating Our World
  • The Fundamentals of Contemporary Data: A Primer on What It Is, Why It Matters, and How to Get It
  • The Fundamentals of Analytics: Peeling Back the Onion
  • A Better Way to Work: The Benefits and Core Values of Agile Development
  • Introducing Scrum: Looking at One of Today's Most Popular Agile Methods
  • A Framework for Agile Analytics: A Simple Model for Gathering Insights
  • University Tutoring Center: An In-Depth Case Study on Agile Analytics
  • People Analytics at Google/Alphabet: Not Your Father's HR Department
  • The Anti-Google: Beneke Pharmaceuticals
  • Ice Station Zebra Medical: How Agile Methods Solved a Messy Health-Care Data Problem
  • Racial Profiling at Nextdoor: Using Data to Build a Better App and Combat a PR Disaster
  • The Benefits of Agile Analytics: The Upsides of Small Batches
  • No Free Lunch: The Impediments to—and Limitations of—Agile Analytics
  • The Importance of Designing for Data: Lessons from the Upstarts
  • What Now?: A Look Forward