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Business agility foundations

Discover how business agility can improve performance, create efficient teams, and benefit your organisation. Created with industry experts, the Agile Business Consortium, this course will introduce you to the essential elements of business agility that are necessary to thrive in complex environments. You’ll explore agile leadership, agile culture, and a framework for business agility to improve customer value and team performance. Plus, you’ll learn how a growth mindset, continuous learning, and engaging others can support organisational change and deliver successful outcomes.

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Standalone study only

You will not be awarded credits for studying this course. It is available for standalone study only and cannot be counted towards an OU qualification.

Short course

Short course code



This is a non-credit bearing course.

Study method

Short course cost

Entry requirements

What you will study

Throughout this introductory-level course, you’ll benefit from expert insight about the essential elements of business agility. Practical exercises will help you to apply your new knowledge, and the social learning approach will empower you to further enhance and reflect on your understanding by sharing your thoughts and opinions with co-learners.

Delivered over four, easy-to-digest sections, you will cover:

1: Introducing business agility

  • Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, and Ambiguous (VUCA) – challenges and impact
  • Business agility philosophy and values
  • Drivers for organisational change
  • Benefits of business agility
  • What agile leadership looks like

2: Understanding agile culture

  • The impact of culture in the workplace
  • Understanding the elements of an agile culture 
  • Accessing the culture in an organisation you know well
  • Interpreting assessment results

3: A framework for business agility

  • A framework for business agility
  • Agile organisational structures; recognising the power of teams
  • The importance of relationships, group dynamics, autonomy, and collaboration in creating high-performing agile teams

4: Engaging others

  • Agility in business based on continuous learning
  • Developing a growth mindset, self-awareness, and a stakeholder focus
  • Engaging others for agility

Please note: the content in this course also features in courses created by The Open University and the Agile Business Consortium, which are available on FutureLearn.

You will learn

By the end of the course, you’ll have the skills to:

  • describe business agility and how to recognise it
  • understand the culture and characteristics needed to support business agility and identify how they relate to organisations you are familiar with
  • consider your own business agility journey and think about approaches that might help
  • explain the key elements of a framework for business agility
  • understand the importance of a shift in mindset, with a focus on delivering value for stakeholders in an environment of collaboration, innovation, and learning.

Vocational relevance

Business agility is an important skill in today's job market because of the increasing complexity and unpredictability of the business environment. Businesses need to adapt quickly and efficiently to survive and thrive. Business agility is becoming a highly valued skill and employers are looking for individuals who can help their organisations stay ahead of the competition, innovate, and navigate complex challenges.

This course has been created by the OU in collaboration with industry experts, the Agile Business Consortium, the global professional body for Business Agility, who have unrivalled expertise in the field.

Learner support

There is no tuition on this course and all study is self-directed. Throughout the course, you will have the opportunity to enhance and reflect on your understanding by sharing your thoughts and opinions with co-learners.

Teaching and assessment


This online course is delivered via social learning and includes video, audio, and written tutorials. You can learn at your own pace with complete flexibility. Throughout the course, you will be asked to respond to questions, reflect on your experiences and learning, and carry out short exercises to help you develop your understanding.

At the end of each section, you will be asked to answer a set of multiple-choice questions to test your knowledge. You can attempt these as often as you need to. It is important to complete them because they count towards your final score.

To receive a Certificate of Completion, you will need to complete every section and achieve at least 70% in all tests.


As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the academic regulations, which are available on our Student Policies and Regulations website.

Entry requirements

You don’t need any prior knowledge of business agility to join this course, although any work experience will enhance and contextualise your learning.

It’s suitable for beginners or those with basic knowledge who want to learn more about business agility and its practical applications for future roles. It's also helpful for those struggling to navigate a VUCA world and those looking to expand their skillset for Continuing Professional Development.

The content in this course is suitable for a global audience and the skills you learn can be applied in a wide range of roles and types of organisations, whether in the public or third sector, large corporates, or SMEs.

If you'd like to discuss the suitability of the course, please contact us.

Course length

This course will take around 48 hours to complete and you can learn at your own pace. As a guide, if you set aside four hours per week, it would take twelve weeks to complete.

You can begin learning at any time. You will have a minimum of six months and up to 18 months to complete the course, depending on your registration date.


Start End England fee Register
At anytime before registration end date Jan 2025 - see Entry requirements for more detail £200.00

Registration closes 31/07/2024


Ways to pay

Credit/Debit Card – We accept American Express, Mastercard, Visa and Visa Electron.

Sponsorship – If this course is geared towards your job or developing your career, you could ask your employer to sponsor you by paying some or all of the fees. Your sponsor just needs to complete a simple form to confirm how much they will be paying and we will invoice them.

The fee information provided here is valid for short courses starting in the 2024/25 academic year. Fees typically increase annually. For further information about the University's fee policy, visit our Fee Rules.

Can you study an Access module for free?

Depending on eligibility and availability of places, you could apply to study your Access module for free.

To qualify, you must:

  1. be resident in England
  2. have a household income of less than £25,000 (or be in receipt of a qualifying benefit)
  3. have not completed one year or more on any full-time undergraduate programme at FHEQ level 4 or above or successfully completed 30 credits or more of OU study within the last 10 years

How to apply to study an Access module for free

Once you've started the registration process, either online or over the phone, we'll contact you about your payment options. This will include instructions on how you can apply to study for free if you are eligible and funded places are still available.

If you're unsure if you meet the criteria to study for free, you can check with one of our friendly advisers on +44 (0)300 303 0069, or you can request a call back.

Not eligible to study for free?

Don't worry! We offer a choice of flexible ways to help spread the cost of your Access module. The most popular options include:

  • monthly payments through OUSBA
  • part-time tuition fee loan (you'll need to be registered on a qualification for this option)

To explore all the options available to you, visit Fees and Funding.

What's included

All learning materials, exercises and activities are delivered entirely online.

Computing requirements

You can learn from your desktop computer or laptop or take your learning with you on a phone or tablet. You’ll need broadband internet access and a desktop/laptop computer with an up-to-date version of Windows (10 or 11) or macOS Ventura or higher. Our OU Study mobile app will operate on all currently supported Android and iOS versions.

If you have a disability

The course is delivered online and makes use of a variety of online resources. If you use specialist hardware or software to assist you in using a computer or the internet, you can contact us about the support which can be given to meet your needs.