Iterating faster with SAFe

Yuval Yeret
3 min readNov 30, 2021

Here’s a frequently asked question in the SAFe community: I wanted to understand what SAFe says about someone who wants to go faster than 2 weeks of iteration? I mean the whole PI concept is based on 5 iterations worth of planning. What if a team/organization wants to develop and synchronize faster than 2 weeks? Is speed going to be compromised by following the standards of PI cadence?

Here’s my take:

Adjusting Cadence Length in SAFe — Can you? Should you?

SAFe considers the 2-week iteration length as a default rather than a rule.

The question you need to consider is what inspection and adaptation cycle you’re looking to accelerate — the Iteration or the PI.

Basically, do you want an opportunity to tactically adjust priorities more frequently than every 2w? Or do you want to adjust a more strategic direction more often than every 8–12w?

With the answer to that, you can experiment either with iteration length and/or PI length. Of course, the cadence length affects coordination overhead — there’s a fine balance.

Additionally, we’re talking about a Planning, Inspection, and Adaptation cadence — NOT the release cadence. Releases are on-demand meaning can be more frequent (or less).

Iteration Goals and PI Objectives provide us with room to maneuver



Yuval Yeret

Business Agility Coach | SAFe Fellow and SPCT | PST | CTO and Partner @ AgileSparks