Agile Worx, a provider of agile life cycle management tools, has announced the release of the Agile Worx agile management platform which allows companies to adopt a hybrid agile approach to software, hardware and firmware development. Agile Worx approaches ALM (Agile Life Cycle Management) much differently from its competitors. To achieve this differentiation for its customers, Agile Worx includes the following features: * Most ALM vendors support only the development process from the bottom up with requirements and task management. Agile Worx transforms the way technology companies do business by supporting agility from the top down with over one hundred metrics and analytics. * Agile Worx includes an innovative user interface that gives managers instant status on the programs, projects and teams. No more searching and sifting through endless graphs and statistics to find out what’s going on! * Agile Worx is the only ALM tool built to support hybrid agile-waterfall implementations and IOT (embedded systems) from the ground up.
Scaled Agile, provider of the Scaled Agile Framework® (SAFe®), has announced the launch of a beta program for a new certification: SAFe 4.0 Scrum Master (SSM). Unlike traditional Scrum Master training that focuses on the fundamentals of team-level Scrum, this course is for professionals who want to gain an understanding of the role of Scrum in the context of the entire enterprise, and learn how to coach teams to deliver the maximum business value that is achievable through SAFe. Designed for those new to the role of Scrum Master, the two-day course prepares Scrum Masters to take a leadership role in facilitating Agile teams’ success in a SAFe implementation. With the addition of SAFe 4.0 Scrum Master, Scaled Agile’s portfolio now includes seven professional credentials designed to meet the needs of Lean-Agile professionals throughout their career as they practice, consult, or train others in SAFe.
Redmine is a popular open source project management web application. It was written using the Ruby on Rails framework. This software is more oriented towards a traditional approach for project management with Gantt charts and calendar than Agile, Scrum or Kanban. However, Redmine architecture allows however creating plugins to add additional features. The development of a number of Agile and Lean plugins has therefore been started in these past years. However not all those plugins have been in continuous development until the current release of Redmine 3.3 You will find below a list of Scrum and Kanban plugins that you could consider to use. You might also decide to fork some of the “abandoned” projects if you are willing to put them up to date. The number of these plugins is limited and trying to add Scrum and Kanban features to Redmine might not be the easier road for your Agile open source journey. For people that are looking for open source solutions, the Open Source Scrum Tools Directory is a good place to visit to have an idea of available open source Scrum tools. Redmine has a directory where all the plugins are listed: http://www.redmine.org/plugins Updates * September 2016: active plugin added : Redmine Agile Plugin, Scrum2B, Scrum-Plugin, Redmine CRM Agile plugin, Redhopper; transfer inactive plugins to inactive section Active Plugins * Redhopper Redhopper is an open source Redmine plugin that allows creating Kanban boards for Redmine. It was inspired by Jira Agile (formerly known as Greenhopper), but follows [...]
Lean Agile Scotland is a three-day conference focused on the Lean and Agile approaches to software development and project management like Scrum. In the agenda of the Lean Agile Scotland conference you can find topics like “Editing Service Design”, “Seven Secrets of Scaling”, “The Eupsychian Manager”, “Dispositioning Advantage: A Pervert’s Guide to Strategy Design”, “A Practical Guide to Cynefin”, “Mapping the Risk in Your Value Stream”, “All Of This Has Happened Before – An Agile History”, “Data-driven decision making through Lean Analytics”, “Kanban Essentials”, “Evolution of Tribes at Spotify – Complexity in Practice”, “Beyond BDD”. Web site: http://leanagile.scot/ Location for the Lean Agile Scotland conference: John McIntyre Conference Centre, Pollock Halls, 18 Holyrood Park Road, Edinburgh, EH16 5AY, United Kingdom
The Agile Business Conference is a two-day conference that takes place in London where meet and engage with the experts and thought leaders who have implemented focused, efficient Agile change programmes in a wide variety of industries. In the agenda of the Agile Business Conference you can find topics like “Agile Cat to Agile Tiger”, “An Agile PMO – How much is Enough?”, “Transformation into Being Agile (The People Way)”, “Agile Service Design and Management: MOT case study”, “The Essential Role of Leadership: Successfully adopting SAFe and mastering organisational change”, “Beyond Budgeting: An Agile management model for new business and people realities”, “Dealing with evolutionary change”, “The Inexorable Rise of Agile”, “Monitor Agile Progress and Health – A Common Ground”, “How to Combine PRINCE2 with Agile and get the best of both worlds”, “How to Slice Product Backlog Items”. Web site: http://www.agileconference.org/ Location for the Agile Business conference: 155 Bishopsgate, London, EC2M 3YD
Agile versus Waterfall is often presented as a difference in development methodology, but it is much more a clash of cultures. Large bureaucracies, government regulation and many other factors can create an environment that is hostile to many forms of innovation and in which Waterfall is actually the most cost-effective approach. Innovating in such environments can be a challenge, but it is both personally and professionally rewarding to do so. In examining the motivations behind these hostile cultures, we can see patterns and opportunities where individuals or teams of developers can serve two masters and deploy cutting-edge technologies and techniques while still honoring both the spirit and the letter of a myriad of restrictions. Whether you are building a product targeting a regulated industry or working on a project at LargeCorp, there are strategies you can adopt that will significantly reduce friction, increase efficiency, and lead to a more positive outcome! Video producer: http://chariotsolutions.com/
If user stories are the start of the conversations to define user requirements, Scrum teams can also use other tools to obtain a more precise definition of these requirements. In the article “When and How to Create Customer Journey Maps”, Kate Williamson presents the concept of customer journey map, the visualization of the process that a person goes through in order to accomplish a goal, and when and how to use them. The article starts with a definition of customer journey maps. To help teams understand and address customer requirements, the journey maps combine two instruments: storytelling and visualization. Journey maps take different forms depending on context and business goals, but they usually start by compiling a series of user goals and actions into a timeline. User thoughts and emotions are added to this timeline to create a narrative. Finally, this narrative is condensed into a visualization used to communicate insights that will inform design processes. After discussing the reason to use customer journey maps, Kate Williamson presents their key elements: * Point of view: choose the actor of the story. * Scenario: determine the specific experience to map. * Actions, mindsets and emotions: what the user is doing, thinking, and feeling during the journey. * Touchpoints and channels: the map aligns touchpoints (times when the actor in the map actually interacts with the company) and channels (methods of communication or service delivery, such as the website or physical store) with user goals and actions. * Insights and ownership: uncover [...]
The Manage Agile conference is a four-day event taking place in Berlin that focused on Agile project management approaches. It is divided into two workshop days and two conference days. The conferences focuses on management topics and is a networking platform where specialists and managers compare notes yearly to establish Agile topics not only in software engineering but also in the whole company up to the management. Most of the talks are in German but there are also a lot of talks in English. In the agenda of the Manage Agile conference you can find topics like “Agile Estimating and Planning”, “SAFe City Simulation – The Scaled Agile Framework in Action!”, “Empowering teams to take ownership of their continuous improvement”, “The Predictability of Delivery”, “The-Poke-Concept – The key to value based development”, “More with LeSS: A Decade of Descaling with Large-Scale Scrum”, “90 Day Challenge – Agile on a Corporate Scale”, “Our community is our customer – diversity challenges agile”, “Ten strategies to (mis)manage Agile”, “Estimation Is Waste!”, “What’s the Value of Agile? A Look at Managing Finances in Agile Projects”. Web site: http://www.manage-agile.de/ Location for the Manage Agile conference: RAMADA Hotel Berlin Alexanderplatz, Karl-Liebknecht-Strasse 32, 10178 Berlin, Germany
The Agile Bodensee conference is a two-day event focused on Agile and Scrum and that takes places on the shore of the Lake Constance (the Bodensee in German) in the southern part of Germany. The first day is dedicated to workshops and open space discussion, the second day will be a classic conference setting. Everything is in German. In the agenda of the Agile Bodensee conference day, you can find topics like “State of (German) Retrospectives”, “The very best of Scrum!”, “Agile Transformation @ Swiss Railways”, “Agile Contracts: Do’s and Don’ts”, “Core of Agile”. The first day Agile Bodensee conference follows the open space format for conferences. Open space is a simple methodology for self-organizing conference tracks. It relies on participation by people who have a passion for the topics to be discussed. There is no preplanned list of topics, only time slots and a space in the main meeting room where interested participants propose topics and pick time slots. Web site: http://www.agile-bodensee.com/en Location for the Agile Bodensee conference: Steigenberger Inselhotel, Auf der Insel 1, 78462 Constance, Germany
Agile Cambridge is a three-day conference that is focused on Agile software development and Scrum project management. The conference mixes workshops, experience reports and case studies. In the agenda of the Agile Cambridge conference you can find topics like “Baking Security into Agile – An Impossible Task?”, “Why exploratory testing is tightly coupled with agile”, “Scaling agile development at the Government Digital Service”, “Agile at scale – doing it right”, “Old dog, new tricks – or how I learned to be better”, “How to overcome communication challenges in a team”, “End-to-end testing considered harmful”, “Waltzing with branches”, “Modern agile project toolbox”, “Agile silicon engineering”, “Becoming an agile leader, regardless of your role”, “Scaled portfolio experience report”, “Intro to Lean UX”, “The ABCD of database development: always be continuously delivering”, “Test-driving the Internet of Things”, “What does it take to become a great product manager?”, “Radiating information – we need better agile boards!”, “Are Retrospectives Dead?”. Web site: http://agilecambridge.net/ Location for the Agile Cambridge conference: Churchill College, Storey’s Way, Cambridge CB3 0DS, United Kingdom
Scrum.org has announced that Kurt Bittner has joined the company as vice president of enterprise solutions. In this role, Kurt is responsible for enterprise-level professional software delivery initiatives. Kurt Bittner previously worked for Forrester Research, where he served as a Principal Analyst covering how enterprises are adopting Agile and DevOps practices. Prior to Forrester, Kurt served as CTO—Americas for the consulting firm Ivar Jacobson International. “Increasingly, organizations see software as the key for business success, but to do it well, development teams must be professional. Scrum.org, which focuses on professional Scrum through assessments and certification, training and licensed Professional Scrum Trainers, is developing enterprise initiatives to provide that organizational environment that enables multiple teams to work together more effectively,” explained Ken Schwaber, co-creator of Scrum and founder of Scrum.org. “Kurt brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to this new role, and will help us drive those initiatives for enterprises, which will enable organizations to adapt and thrive in this period of unprecedented challenge and opportunity.” Kurt will work alongside Ken Schwaber and others to evolve existing and create new ways for organizations to build environments that encourage and sustain scaling professional software delivery, and to drive a cohesive vision for Scrum.org on how enterprises can deliver greater value to themselves and their customers by delivering software in a professional way.
AgileByExample is a Lean and Agile three-days conference taking place in Warsaw, Poland that helps you learn Agile on live examples. The first day is dedicated to a Lean Agile Dojo with workshops. Keynotes, talks and discussions are all in English. In the agenda of the AgileByExample conference you can find topics like “5 Whys Root Cause Analysis”, “Taking Back Agile: Returning to our Core Values and Practices”, “No time for Planning Poker? Try Silent Sort Estimating Instead”, “eXPert Leadership”, “Time to Clean up the Product!”, “Pair Programming Demystified”, “The Evolution of a Super Agile Software Development Capability”, “Scaling agile at LEGO”, “Choosing Change: How to Enable a Shift to Agile”. Web site: http://www.agilebyexample.com/ Location for the AgileByExample conference: Multikino Ursynów, Al. KEN 60, Imielin Metro Station, Warsaw, Poland
Product backlog refinement (or grooming) is an important activity in Scrum projects where user stories are prioritizes, right-sized and estimated. In his book “Agile Reflections”, Robert Galen provides some hints about how to verify that that product backlog grooming has been done successfully and that the right requirements information is available for the next sprint. 1. Sprint planning is incredibly crisp, short and easy; usually taking 2 hours or less for a 2-week sprint. There are NO architectural or design discussions within the meeting—the relevant parts of these discussions having occurred earlier. 2. As a daily occurrence, team members are talking about epics and stories targeted for 2-3-4 sprints in the future. As a result, everyone is naturally aligning with the Product Owners’ vision. 3. The team easily contributes new stories to the backlog which represents non-feature based work; for example: testing artifacts, non-functional testing work, refactoring, automation development, performance tuning, research spikes, etc. Everyone views it as a shared responsibility. 4. The team has a feel for where the product is going long term and maps efforts, designs, theme suggestions, and trade-offs towards that vision. 5. Each sprint’s goal is easily derived from the backlog; i.e., there is a sense of thoughtful and meaningful story collections or themes that easily surface from within the backlog. From time to time, think of these as “packages” for customer delivery. 6. The Product Owner includes team feedback (bugs, refactoring, improvement, testing, etc.) in EVERY sprint – in some percentage of focus. They [...]
Agile Africa is a two-day conference for Agile and Scrum practitioners that takes place in Johannesburg, South Africa. Agile Africa is an annual conference where African software professionals meet to listen to leading international and local speaker discussing better ways of developing software. In the agenda of Agile Africa you can find topics like “Alignment at Scale”, “Attack Strategies for Taming Legacy Code”, “Exploring the Options with PopcornFlow”, “Making Retros Work”, “Leader transformation – a side effect of an agile transition”, “Fish ponds and Agile”, “Specification by example”, “Travelling light – The pros and perils of lean documentation”, “Behavior Driven develop your Agile Projects”, “Requirements Engineering for Agile Product Owners: Hunting Value with Structured Conversations”, “Product Owner Vision and Challenges: Managing Agile projects and organizational objective”. Web site: http://agileafricaconf.com/ Location for the Agile Africa conference: Wanderers Club, 21 North Street, Illovo, Johannesburg, South Africa
Agile Prague is a two-day conference focused on Agile and Scrum and that takes place in the capital of the Czech Republic. The Agile Prague conference is running in two parallel tracks in two days, where you can choose from the variety of talks for managers, Scrum Masters, product owners and try agile practices in practical workshops for testers and developers, share the know-how, discuss in the open space. In the agenda of the Agile Prague conference you can find topics like “Potentially Shippable is no longer good enough”, “Going from Scrum to Kanban”, “From total punk to two-week release cycles”, “The four levels of Scrum”, “Rebooting a stalled Agile adoption”, “From Taylorism to Agile organization”, “Improve your communication skills dramatically without saying a word”, “Growing Agile Organizations”, “How to improve software project estimates – The #NoEstimates view”, “Architecture with Agility”, “Agile Innovation – Product Management for turbulent times”. Web site: http://agileprague.com/ Location for the Agile Prague conference: OK System Conference Center, Na Pankráci 125, 140 21 Prague 4, Czech Republic
It can be complicated to involve the whole team to facilitate product backlog refinement and take part in requirements discussions. I would like to suggest a structure of the PBR (product backlog refinement) meeting that will encourage everybody to speak up and share their ideas on functionality. This presentation explores what facilitation techniques to use for discussion, what prioritization and estimation models are applicable for business requirements, what documents and metrics can help us to make accurate planning and how to track the results of this meeting. Video producer: http://aceconf.com/
SwanseaCo is a two-day conference that takes place in Swansea, Wales. It discusses Agile development, Scrum project management and Software Craftsmanship. The conference includes keynotes and presentations, a discussion panel and time between sessions to network and connect with fellow Agile software developers from around the world. In the agenda of the SwanseaCo conference you can find topics like “Refactoring Legacy Code”, “Meetings or Discipline, It’s Your Choice”, “Agile Remotely”, “Organizational Wide Agility”, “A Toolset for Creating a Potentially Releasable Product Increment”, “User-Story Point estimation: a new approach”, “An Insider’s View Of Agile In The Public Sector”, “The 7 unmentioned challenges of Scrum”, “What Is Continuous Inspection, Anyway?”, “Level Up Your Tests”, “Managing Global Teams: Lessons Learned”, “Surrender the Illusion of Control”, “Spreadsheets are Code”, “Software Craftsmen Need to Stop Coding so Much”, “Lean UX and Agile Development Taking the Public Sector to New Levels”, “Bringing Agile Concepts to Operations”. Web site: http://swancon.co.uk/ Location for the SwanseaCo conference: Liberty Stadium, Landore, Swansea SA1 2FA, UK
The Agile on the Beach conference is a two-day conference focused mainly on Scrum project management and Agile software development that takes place in Falmouth, on the beaches of Cornwall in UK. In the agenda of Agile on the Beach you can find topics like “Testing in a Continuous Delivery World”, “Build In Quality”, “The design and implementation of cyber-dojo”, “How we implemented TDD in Embedded C/C++”, “Accelerated learning with Mob Programming”, “Keeping distributed agile teams face to face”, “Ship fast!”, “Incredible Agile Teams”, “Agile values and principles – for non software development teams”, “Introduction to Continuous Delivery”, “Being Agile in Business”, “Can Guinness help you estimate?”, “Effective Customer Interviewing”, “The Death of Continuous Integration”, “Value Led Agile Delivery”, “The Geek’s Guide to Leading Teams”, “Making Mad Men more Agile”, “User Story Mapping for Fun & Profit”, “My Kanban Diary”. Web site: http://agileonthebeach.com/ Location for the Agile on the Beach conference: Falmouth University, Penryn Campus, Treliever Road, Penryn, Cornwall TR10 9FE, United Kingdom
Agile Open California South is two-day conference that provides Agile and Scrum practitioners in Southern California an opportunity for learning and networking. Agile Practitioners and newcomers come together for two days to discuss, examine and otherwise brainstorm the most timely and relevant topics in Agile development today. The Agile Open California South conference follows the open space format for conferences. Open space is a simple methodology for self-organizing conference tracks. It relies on participation by people who have a passion for the topics to be discussed. There is no preplanned list of topics, only time slots and a space in the main meeting room where interested participants propose topics and pick time slots Web site: http://agileopencalifornia.com/ Location for the Agile Open California South conference: University of California Irvine, Irvine, CA 92697, USA
As stated in the Agile Manifesto, Agile software development is about “Individuals and interactions”. The importance of having a performing team where individuals collaborate is an essential factor for the success of software development projects. In his “Forming Agile Teams Workbook”, Jesus Mendez provides some tools that offer an alternative-proven way to add more structure, transparency and visibility to formation of Agile teams. The approach proposed in the book is based on the famous Bruce Tuckman’s group development theory. This model says that team undergoes various stages during their life: Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing, Adjourning. Based on the practical experience of the author, the book proposes tools for the Scrum Master to help teams getting organized and structured, before navigating to the “Storming” stage of the Tuckman’s theory of group development. Adopting Scrum practices is not always easy and this book open the discussion on all the issues that might occur during this stage, with the daily stand-up meeting for instance. This book is easy to read and well-structured, offering a detailed description of the proposed activities used in team formation. Many tables and figures help also in understanding clearly the proposed concepts. An appendix provides step by step instructions for using the tools and exercises mentioned in the earlier parts of the book. I will recommend this book not only to Scrum Masters and coaches involved in the early stages of Agile projects, but more broadly to every software development (project) manager that wants to improve the cohesion and [...]