New Case Study: TomTom discusses the Good, the Bad, the Ugly, in a study that spans 5 years

New Case Study: TomTom discusses the Good, the Bad, the Ugly, in a study that spans 5 years

Case Studies

Best known for being a global leader in navigation and mapping products, TomTom is also the mapping provider for Apple Maps, and the maps and traffic data provider for Uber drivers in over 300 cities worldwide.

good-badAn interesting thing about TomTom’s SAFe adoption is that it started in 2012, which gives us a view into a fast-growing company that has worked within the Framework over a five-year period. There were some early wins (see quote below), as well as challenges and learnings, which they summarize in detail as the “Good,” the Bad,” and the “Ugly.”


“There is no doubt in my mind that without SAFe and Rally we would not have launched this in only 140 days. It is also our best new product ever.”
Re: TomTom GO500 sold in 45 countries


Before adopting SAFe, TomTom’s challenges had a familiar ring:

  • Organized as waterfall projects
  • Many projects working in all parts of the code with minimal module or component ownership
  • Many releases are months-quarters late
  • Multiple code lines and branches
  • Negligible automated testing & no continuous integration
  • “downstream” teams spend 3,4,5 months accepting the code and often changing it
  • Poor visibility and facts-based decision-making

Once they decided to adopt the Framework they got it right from the start, providing SAFe training for their CTO, SVPs, and 50 CSMs and CPOs. Today, SAFe is practiced by all of TomTom’s large product teams representing navigation software, online services, map creation and sports software. That represents approximately 750 FTEs, with 200+ trained and certified in SAFe.

Click here for the full summary and downloadable study.

A special thanks to TomTom’s  James Janisse, VP Connected Navigation System, and Han Schaminee, SVP Location Technology Products, for sharing your story.

Stay SAFe!
–Dean

Author Info

Dean Leffingwell

Recognized as the one of the world’s foremost authorities on Lean-Agile best practices, Dean Leffingwell is an author, entrepreneur, and software development methodologist.

comment (2)

  1. James Janisse

    10 May 2016 - 3:24 am

    I am happy that our case study on adopting SAFe in TomTom has been so well received. We are open to sharing lesson learned within this community so don’t be shy.

    I should point out that there were a few teams in TomTom already and successfully following agile methods, so I don’t want ignore or gloss over their achievements.

    • Dean Leffingwell

      Dean Leffingwell

      10 May 2016 - 1:41 pm

      Thanks James,
      We are all building on the success of agile teams and leaders that have come before us, but I’m confident your personal leadership helped create the outstanding results at TomTom.

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