New Case Study: Sony PlayStation Network Stays Top of its Game with SAFe

New Case Study: Sony PlayStation Network Stays Top of its Game with SAFe

Case Studies SAFe Updates

“I personally believe we have delivered more in the two years we’ve been using SAFe than we did in the four years prior—not in raw code, but in value. Our downtime went down and that saved the company about 30 million over the course of the year. That’s real money and a really positive outcome.”

Tripp Meister, Director of Technology, PlayStation Network


PlayStation, made by Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE), currently leads the gaming console market with more than 150 million users globally.

When millions of gamers eagerly await your product releases, every day matters. For PlayStation Network, delivering a quality product on time requires tight collaboration across more than 1,000 SIE engineering team members.

In meeting its targets, the SIE engineering organization found Waterfall and Agile Scrum fell short in bringing together hundreds of team members cohesively and in addressing the many dependencies across the organization. What’s more, disparate teams were able to plan only one or two iterations in advance.

In early 2014, SIE leadership turned to SAFe to bring greater organization and collaboration to development. The Framework allowed them to bring top-down prioritization, pull disparate groups together into common timeframes, and enabled the group to manage dependencies much better.

Two years into their implementation, SAFe has fundamentally changed the culture of the engineering organization:

  • Greater visibility/transparency – Developers have more insight into broader company initiatives and activities
  • Better coordination – Now, from Tokyo to San Diego, everyone speaks a common language when it comes to Agile
  • More predictability – In an environment with many dependencies, SAFe serves as a dependency management system, improving predictability
  • Clearer priorities – With weighted shortest job first (WSJF), SAFe brought a new approach to prioritizing

Since 2014, the company has launched six trains globally, shipped more than 350 production releases, and completed 22 PSIs (potentially shippable increments, now known as Program Increments), over 125 sprints and 250 features.

They also cut initial planning time by 28 percent. Instead of 1550 man-days to plan, it now takes 1125. With new efficiency, PlayStation Network puts a multi-million-dollar value on cost savings.

Check out the full case study, which is based on a public presentation by Tripp Meister of PlayStation Network. To watch in full, click here.

Many thanks to Tripp Meister, former Director of Technology, PlayStation Network, for sharing PlayStation Network’s SAFe 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.

One comment

  1. Armond Mehrabian

    23 Mar 2017 - 8:16 pm

    It’s amazing to see Sony Playstation’s progress since 2014. I was fortunate to be their SAFe trainer and coach to get them started on their journey. Their leadership team have done an outstanding job of relentless continuous improvement every PI. The results speak for themselves.

    -Armond Mehrabian, SPCT
    Portofino Solutions, Inc.

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