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Zen ExMachina(ZX): Agile Consultancy for the Digital Transformation

25 Most Promising Agile Solution Providers

Agile methodologies are widely accepted as one of the best approaches to project delivery. An organizationthat has undergone agile transformation finds increased harmony among stakeholders, resulting in improvements in overall productivity and company’s profitability. One of the most interesting changes that agile brings about is the positive effect on team morale. Given this heightened interest in agile project delivery and project management approaches, there is a dire need for service providers who can understand and respond well to the business needs of individual companies as well as government agencies. Eying unexplored opportunities in the agile consulting industry, Mia Horrigan, Matthew Hodgson and Kai Koenig incepted Zen Ex Machina (ZXM), an agile management consulting services company, to help clients solve some of the most complex business problems and create elegant digital products and services in the process.Mia Horrigan, CEO, explains, “ZXM deploys 21st century’s digital, agile techniques to understand complicated business problems—an approach which is faster to market and can meet customer expectations in minimized cost.”

Founded in 2011, ZXM helps customers in their transition from traditional development methodologies to agile methods that meet the demands of the digital age and become “faster and smarter”. ZXM employs Lean UX and Design Thinking methodologies as multi-disciplinary tools to bring clarity and transparency in solving the problems clients face. For the clients from government sector, ZXM uses Lean to bring transparency in their value chain. The company uses UX Story Mapping to identify pain-points in existing government services, and uses Scrum to rapidly develop and deliver digital, lower cost,citizen-centric solutions.For its corporate clients, ZXM uses Lean UX and Scrumtocollaborate on producing simpler solutions thatdelight and engage with fast feedback loops.
With its headquarters in Canberra, Australia, ZXM uses behavioral change methods,design thinking and continuous improvement approaches in delivery. Using theTranstheoretical Model (TTM) of Behavioral Change, ZXM helps clients to transform organizations through a pragmatic sequence of changes to create long-lived, sustainable behaviors and promote cultural change. By using Design Thinking,ZXM engages curious, critical and creative dialogues in collaboration with clients to solve complex problems.ZXM also uses the Deming Cycle(P-D-C-A) as the foundation of its delivery in the form of Scrum—an agile methodology. It forms the basis of all the consulting products and services, including management consulting reports, user-experience advice, strategic reviews and agile coaching. Matthew Hodgson, CIO, says, “Close collaboration is the key to our approach. Our goal is not only to collaboratively help them to solve their problems, but ultimately to teach them how to improve their digital business products and services by themselves.”

By using Design Thinking, ZXM engages curious, critical and creative dialogues in collaboration with clients to solve complex problems

Some of ZXM’s elite clients include Federal Government such as the Australian Taxation Office and Department of Health, global e-commerce leader eBay, utilitiesincluding Origin Energy, digital business, Cupid Media, start-ups and many more. Its founders are acclaimed international speakers who regularly share their experiences in digital transformation and enterprise agility at conferences across UK, USA, Europe, Australia, New Zealand and China. Kai Koenig, CTO, adds, “We have doubled our growth last year and also doubled consultant base to meet the growing demand for agility in consulting services andtransformation.” By staying true to its core values of simplicity, agility, collaboration and sustainability, ZXM aims to expand its reach across Asia Pacific region.