Author: Gábor Stramb

Agile Planning aka The What-IF discussion

Running Agile Projects is must have skill for all Project manager this days. Mentioning Waterfall methodology became a curse not to mention that it seems, now days everyone is a scrum master. Let’s go back to subject. And outline, what it takes to have an Agile Plan which works. What are the steps leading too committed plan? Agile Planning – You have to be prepared. Before any work starts, you need a plan to make sure team understand the end goal. Considering “scope creep” also exist on Agile projects, PMs have to be prepared for all kinds of “what-if” discussions.  Define a product roadmap. It is the breakdown of features which are essential for final product. At this stage, product backlog shall be created. To list all features and deliverables.Create a release schedule – Delivery plan. Should not be complicated, you need a high level timetable which you create at the beginning of the release.Plan your sprints. First, you define your sprint duration. Before sprint start planning session should be conducted where the sprint goal are set with all necessary requirements that support the sprint goal. Host daily standup meeting. To ensure the right priorities are worked on by the team. During daily meeting the team can discuss progress and obstacles if there’s any. Short and precise meeting required for efficiency. Short means less than 15 minutes.Sprint review. By the...

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Why co-location matters?

Many organizations operate in Matrix environment which means, team members are spread between company offices around the globe.But, for “real” agile project success the benefit of having teams co-located is enormously huge. It generates real business value.Let’s review the key benefit factors: Flawless communication. Take to the example of agile testing of the agile software development. It requires constant communication and collaboration between team members. When team share the same office space, meetings/discussions/suggestions are easier to digest. It minimizes confusion and rework. It led to better decision making.Trust. Successful teams are able to perform if there is “enough” trust in the team/organization. Also, the added plus is mutual respect. In co-located situations people are already familiar with each other or able to “break the ice” quickly. Teams like tester and developers can work closely to each other. All-in-all, delivery solutions earlier and higher quality.Operation costs are significantly lower. We talked about already the benefits from the communication side, but it is significant to mention how much cost saving co-location can generate. Since, the HW infrastructure and costs related to communications, video conference, phone bills, data centers, test drives…etc. Agile...

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