Skip to content

Feed aggregator

SAFe helps HP Enterprise improve quality by 20% while delivering faster

Agile Product Owner - Tue, 07/05/2016 - 14:03


“With a proven framework, we can deliver solutions much faster and with less effort. SAFe® defines the roles, teams, activities and artifacts to apply Lean and Agile principles at enterprise scale, and provides outstanding training and coaching materials to increase our chance of success.”
Peter Vollmer, Distinguished Technologist at HPE

case_study_thumb_HPEAt the newly formed HPE, small steps were the key to Agile success. In the newly published HPE case study, you’ll find inspiration in how HPE coached teams through early initiatives and kept everyone speaking the same language during their SAFe transformation (even if they don’t speak the same native language).

To help teams apply SAFe beyond the classroom, HPE equipped them with a trainer to educate and coach them through the process. They made sure everyone understood terminology and cleared up misunderstandings and preconceived ideas about Agile principles.

Early SAFe users evangelized their experiences, which quickly increased engagement and adoption. Today, HPE is up to several thousand people actively applying Agile methods, with the numbers continuing to grow.

As a result, the company has improved both velocity and quality:

  • Iterations take weeks rather than months
  • Sprints run in two weeks instead of four
  • Defects dropped by 20 percent

To continue the momentum, HPE now looks to train more than 1,000 employees on SAFe and deploy more SPCs in each major geographic area.

Read the full study here, and for those of you who have been following these success stories, note that we’ve added a new section to the study format, “Sharing Best Practices,” where the organization shares their top 2 or 3 thoughts on how to successfully implement SAFe.

Many thanks to Peter Vollmer, SPC4 and Distinguished Technologist at HPE, for sharing HPE’s SAFe Agile journey!

Stay SAFe,

Categories: Blogs

Targetprocess v.3.8.10: Group Team Iterations, “Assign to me” in context menu, “Skip” action for test steps, new Time entity, bug fixes

TargetProcess - Edge of Chaos Blog - Tue, 07/05/2016 - 13:13
Group Team Iteration axis if Team is selected as another axis

If you plan work for Team Iterations with the same start date across multiple teams, your life has just become easier! Selecting the Team and Team Iteration axes on views with work items will group Team Iterations into one column.
Pasted image at 2016_06_29 05_01 PM
If you work with SAFe or have cross-team dependencies, you will love using this new functionality with the Show Relations mashup. The mashup adds a button to your top bar which allows you to visualize cross-team dependencies of different types (blockers, relations, dependencies).

Here is an example of a Program Board with the mashup turned on. The visual representation of relations can help you to identify risks caused by dependencies early-on in the planning stage.

"Assign to me" in the context menu

From now on, it will take less clicks to assign an entity to yourself. You can do it directly from a board; just select ‘Assign To Me’ from the context menu of the card you want to assign.

Timeline: Planned vs Actual sections

In case Planned and Actual sections are separated on a Timeline, they will now be connected with a line.

"Skip" action for test steps

Do you want to skip certain test steps during a test case execution? Now you can use the new "Skip" button. You can return back to these test steps later or skip them entirely for the current test plan run.

Improved navigation in search popup

We've improved backwards navigation (using your browser's "Back" button). Search results will now be available through direct link when you navigate back to a page.

Time entity: List, Board

It used to be difficult to get a list of certain time entries in Targetprocess. Now, you can create Board and List views that display Time as cards. You can group them by User, Spent Date or other fields, and you can filter or sort them as you like.

In the example below, we’ve selected Person as the lane for Time cards on a List View. Now, we can easily see the individual time entries which have been posted in the last three days:

Minor design changes

We've implemented a new design for sliders, updated the text for deep link confirmation pages and made general improvements to optimize:

  • gray and black backgrounds
  • board perfomance when many cards need to be updated
Fixed Bugs:
  • Fixed an issue when Planned section would hide Actual section on Timelines
  • Fixed inconsistency of icons for teams without icons
  • Inactive projects are shown only on views where projects are selected as cards
  • Fixed possibility to allocate user for 1 day
  • Fixed filter by dropdown CF in lookup
  • Fixed error when user clicks to open Diagnostic Report
  • Fixed an issue where Test Plan Run would not be moved to the new Release along with the Iteration
  • Fixed an issue with reloading Entities when user creates Relation from Relations tab
  • Fixed format of dates in exported files
  • Fixed list layout issue when performing inline edits
  • Fixed an error when you change the value of drop down CF via a board
  • Fixed an issue where the direct link in the context menu of a Project didn't open the Project
  • Fixed inline editing for values from Custom fields on time cards
  • Fixed inconsistency of links in Markdown and CK Editor
Categories: Companies

Links for 2016-07-04 []

Zachariah Young - Tue, 07/05/2016 - 09:00
Categories: Blogs

Case Study: Flexible Capacity is more valuable than a Flux Capacitor

NetObjectives - Tue, 07/05/2016 - 06:39
Recognize this pattern?  Product Manager wants mobile app.  Requests native apps for Android and iOS.  No one asks about priority, so IT organization silos provide iOS and Android teams to work in parallel.  Two project teams are formed and each estimates one year to deliver.  What’s wrong with this picture? There’s nothing really wrong with this picture, but are there other approaches to...

[[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
Categories: Companies

Case Study: Learning Where the Real Challenge Is

NetObjectives - Mon, 07/04/2016 - 14:44
The case study shows how a client of ours used value stream mapping, combined with 5-whys to identify the real cause of a challenge that was causing a lot of rework (estimated to be 20% of the entire workload of a 100 person development organization).  Once the root cause of the problem was identified, it was easily eliminated.  The case study illustrates the importance of looking at the entire...

[[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
Categories: Companies

Verbal Aikido for Product Managers

Xebia Blog - Sun, 07/03/2016 - 14:41
"Well eh ok, I guess so" mumbled the student in the training exercise where he was practicing how to say no to feature gluttony. I decided to give the class an additional exercise to awaken their inner diplomat. “Diplomacy is the art of telling people to go to hell in such a way that they
Categories: Companies

Links for 2016-07-02 []

Zachariah Young - Sun, 07/03/2016 - 09:00
Categories: Blogs

Book Review: The John Carlos Story - Sat, 07/02/2016 - 18:21

At our internal away day in Brighton, ThoughtWorks EU had a Pillar 3 Bookstore, a book store selling books that encouraged people to learn more about Social and Economic Justice Issues. I ended up picking up The John Carlos Story: The Sports Moment That Changed the World, a bibliography of one of the two famous runners in the 1968 Mexico City Olympics Games who raised their black-gloved fists on the winning podium.

John Carlos Story

As an Australian I remember reading last year a couple of articles of Peter Norman, a person who joined their protest by wearing a symbol but also lived with the same consequences. He died of a heart attack in 2006.

Despite being icons for protesting the movement, what struck me is the courage and the passion that John Carlos had at the time, fighting for equal rights and representation despite the environment in which he found himself. I can only imagine what it was like, having used the opportunity of a world-wide stage, to live with the aggressive response from both the Olympic committees and the sporting community back in the day.

I really enjoyed reading the book to better understand the story you never hear about, and the struggles and bravery people have to fight for the causes they believe in. Do yourself a favour and get a copy of the book here.

Categories: Blogs

What Work Should You Delegate?

Derick Bailey - new ThoughtStream - Fri, 07/01/2016 - 14:30

In the previous video, I talked about the balance between delegating work with a “toss is over the fence” mentality vs checking in to see how things are going.

But I never asked, nor answered, the question of what work should be delegated, in the first place.

Unfortunately, the only valid answer – like everything in software development and business – is “it depends”.

But there are a few principles and rules that you can keep in mind when looking at work and deciding whether or not it should be delegated.

So, what are those principles? What the are the rules, or categories of work with which to make the decision?

Find out in this episode of #ThoughtsOnCode.

Categories: Blogs

Case Study: Financial Team Happiness Increases Due to ATDD

NetObjectives - Fri, 07/01/2016 - 12:31
I went to a financial firm that wanted to increase the effectiveness of their teams. One of the easiest ways to do this is to incorporate Acceptance Test-Driven Development (ATDD) into the team’s process. ATDD involves the triad (customer, developer, and tester) collaborating together on defining the details of a requirement or user story in the form of tests. These tests are written prior to...

[[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
Categories: Companies

Links for 2016-06-30 []

Zachariah Young - Fri, 07/01/2016 - 09:00
Categories: Blogs

Python: BeautifulSoup – Insert tag

Mark Needham - Thu, 06/30/2016 - 23:28

I’ve been scraping the Game of Thrones wiki in preparation for a meetup at Women Who Code next week and while attempting to extract character allegiances I wanted to insert missing line breaks to separate different allegiances.

I initially tried creating a line break like this:

>>> from bs4 import BeautifulSoup
>>> tag = BeautifulSoup("<br />", "html.parser")
>>> tag

It looks like it should work but later on in my script I check the ‘name’ attribute to work out whether I’ve got a line break and it doesn’t return the value I expected it to:


My script assumes it’s going to return the string ‘br’ so I needed another way of creating the tag. The following does the trick:

>>> from bs4 import Tag
>>> tag = Tag(name = "br")
>>> tag

That’s all for now, back to scraping for me!

Categories: Blogs

Targetprocess goes to London: Gartner PPM & IT Governance Summit 2016

TargetProcess - Edge of Chaos Blog - Thu, 06/30/2016 - 18:26
Ole (one of our Solutions Architects) lines up his shot

Ole (one of our Solution Architects) lines up his shot

This month, our team headed to London for the June 13-14 Gartner PPM & IT Governance Summit. Gartner is a technology research and analysis firm that advises enterprise clients. They are considered by many to be thought-leaders for management and IT.

The theme of this year’s summit was “Results-Driven PPM — Leading Change and Delivering Value in the Digital Age.” In our opinion, Gartner’s key message was that in today’s rapidly changing business world, organizations need to develop the capability to quickly react to change and focus on value delivery, rather than continue to focus on managing budgets and meeting deadlines.

This theme matches perfectly with our tool, so we decided to become a sponsor of the event and demonstrate our agile PPM and SAFe capabilities. The summit was full of executives and analysts, all sharing knowledge and trying to find the next big thing. We wanted to gather feedback from this high-level crowd, and examine our own position in the PPM market.

Learn how to connect strategy and execution in the PPM section of our Solutions Gallery

The Targetprocess Booth:


Our booth’s theme was “Work smart, golf more.” The idea behind this is that using Targetprocess for agile portfolio management (agile PPM) will allow PMOs to save time by improving visibility and traceability. You can read more about this concept at our online brochure.

There was a lot of excitement at our booth about agile PPM, as well as the possibility to manage ALM and PPM in one singular tool. However, there was also some disappointment about the lack of certain traditional items, such as Gantt charts. We’ve said before that timelines are better than Gantt charts for agile management, but we still paid careful attention to these criticisms (see our conclusions at the end).  

After a day of serious presentations and keynote speakers, we took part in a networking reception and handed out some golf-themed drinks (‘Tee’ Time, “Hole in One”) as well as golf balls with agile PPM quotes. We also laid out a small golfing mat in front of our booth and even dressed up like golfers, just for a bit of fun.  

Our team members came from London, Germany, Belarus, the Netherlands, and the U.S. to be present for the summit. The photo was taken after an evening Networking Reception on June 13, 2016

Visitors to our booth had the chance to win a set of Wilson golf clubs. At the end of the summit we held a lottery, and Maria Kiekara from YIT Group was drawn as the winner. Congratulations Maria!


Gartner's Conclusions: On business in general:

Gartner states that digital business is still evolving, and predicts that algorithms will be used in autonomous business with smart machines through 2020 and beyond. Just as the internet brought about the advent of digital business, algorithms and smart machines will be the catalyst for algorithmic (or, autonomous) business.

Gartner PPM & IT Governance Summit, 13-14 June 2016, London, UK, Keynote: Business and Technology 2030: Algorithms and (More) Autonomous Business, Dale Kutnick, Donna Fitzgerald

On IT:

Gartner is continuing its advocacy for Bi-Modal IT, a practice that Gartner defines as the “the managing of two separate, coherent modes of IT delivery, one focused on stability and the other on agility. Mode 1 is traditional and sequential, emphasizing safety and accuracy. Mode 2 is exploratory and nonlinear, emphasizing agility and speed.” Analysts stressed the need to dedicate resources to Mode 2 projects without traditional budget rules:

  • The value of Mode 2 initiatives are not easily reflected using traditional ROI analysis
  • Mode 2 projects which are subjected to traditional funding and governance rules will be stymied, often at the expense of innovation
  • Creative leadership from the CIO and IT departments is required to shift the thinking around approval and funding for Mode 2 projects.

Gartner PPM & IT Governance Summit, 13-14 June 2016, London, UK, Workshop: Mode 2/Agile Funding — No Longer, About Cost But Value, Jim McGittigan

Gartner PPM & IT Governance Summit, 13 - 14 June 2016, London, UK, Changing Governance to Exploit Enterprise Agile, Bill Swanton

On agile:

The unfortunate truth about agile is that it is excellently positioned for use as a buzzword. However, we know that agile should be more than just a buzzword and is here to stay.

Gartner PPM & IT Governance Summit, 13 - 14 June 2016, London, UK, Survival Strategies for the PMO in an Enterprise Agile World, Matthew Hotle

This year, a recurring theme at analyst presentations seemed to be that traditional project management should give way to agile product management. Early capability to ship value (as MVP), continuous improvement, iterations, and team continuity were some of the cited benefits that such a shift can bring.

Gartner discussed SAFe as a framework for scaling agile practices.


We believe a key message from Gartner was that traditional PPM is still widespread in the enterprise market, but PMO's and CIO's need to figure out how to embrace agile at the enterprise level.


Gartner also stated how digitalization is disrupting the PPM “Comfort Zone.”

Gartner PPM & IT Governance Summit, 13-14 June 2016, London, UK, The PPM Market: State of the Universe, Daniel B. Stang

An action plan from Gartner for PPM Leaders: In the next 12 months, work to eliminate or consolidate overlapping tools where possible, without assuming all work can be managed in one tool.

Gartner also offers some advice on PPM tool best practices in the face of disruption: keep track of the varied needs for different kinds of PPM tools, listen to the different workgroups and teams asking for them or adopting them outright, and don't assume you can force all the workgroups into the same tool.

Gartner PPM & IT Governance Summit, 13 - 14 June 2016, London, UK, The PPM Market: State of the Universe, Daniel B. Stang

Our Conclusions:

There was a lot of discourse about agile at the summit. Still, we observed that many of the exhibiting tools were fairly traditional, and the attitude of PMO representatives from some companies towards agile seemed to be one of guarded optimism.

This caution is understandable; the enterprise market is just waking up to agile as the way to survive in today’s disruptive economy. The PPM industry is going to need to reinvent itself soon to stay relevant, but big enterprises cannot just switch gears as fast as they may want to. However, companies that adopt an agile mindset early-on can expect to get a leg up on the competition as the digitalization of business pushes inexorably forward, forcing companies to adopt more flexible and adaptive approaches.

"By 2020, more than three-quarters of the S&P 500 will be companies that we have not heard of yet."  - Professor Richard Foster, Yale University

We're not saying that Targetprocess, as a tool for agile portfolio management, is the ultimate solution for any client. Just as agile can't be looked at as a magic pill to cure all your troubles, no software tool should be looked at as perfectly comprehensive for all 4 levels of Gartner's pyramid above. Our PPM solution is still evolving. However, we strongly believe that it is well-positioned to help companies that want to scale agile to the enterprise level in order to embrace change, become more responsive, and deliver value faster.

100% of users believe @Targetprocess is headed in the right direction #PPM

— G2 Crowd (@G2Crowd) January 25, 2016

As a nice bonus, Targetprocess lets you do both agile PPM and agile ALM within one tool so that you can have more time for other activities, such as golf (instead of manually synchronizing data between your PPM and ALM solutions). Speaking of which, we have some Targetprocess golf balls left with quotes about our PPM solution, so let us know if you feel like giving it a shot!


Categories: Companies

Driving Innovation with Kanban at Jaguar Land Rover

In this webinar, I share how Kanban is being implemented across new vehicle development projects at Jaguar...

The post Driving Innovation with Kanban at Jaguar Land Rover appeared first on Blog | LeanKit.

Categories: Companies

Serverless Single Page Apps, In Print at The Pragmatic Bookshelf

Radyology - Ben Rady - Thu, 06/30/2016 - 15:31
I've been working on a book that explains the style of single page app that I've been building for the last few years. Up until very recently, I couldn't find a way to use this style for public-facing apps, because... Ben Rady
Categories: Blogs

Occam’s Razor and Agile Frameworks

Leading Agile - Mike Cottmeyer - Thu, 06/30/2016 - 13:05

Occam’s (or Ockham’s) razor is a principle we attribute to William of Ockham back in the 14th century. The principle states that “Entities should not be multiplied unnecessarily.”  The popular interpretation is, the simplest explanation is usually the correct one.

It has inspired numerous expressions including “parsimony of postulates”, the “principle of simplicity”, the “KISS principle” (Keep It Simple, Stupid).

Most of Occam’s principles originate from philosophy.  Maybe this is why you will now find many approaches (especially the principle of simplicity) in the basics of design principles.

Given a choice between functionally equivalent designs, the simplest one should be selected. Implicit in Ockham’s razor is the idea that unnecessary elements decrease a design’s efficiency, and increase the probability of unanticipated consequences. [¹]

When comparing technologies that perform the same function, one that is simpler in design will tend to be simpler to construct and repair.  Additionally, it will tend to require greater skill to use, whereas a technology that requires less skill to use will tend to be more complex in design and more complex to construct and repair. For example, a straight razor is relatively simple in design and construction, but requires considerable skill to use, whereas an electric razor is relatively complex in design and construction but requires little skill to use. [²]

Agile Frameworks

Now, go back and reread the two referenced passages, substituting design and technology with Agile framework.  I also like the straight razor analogy, mostly because I shave using a straight razor.  I only had to cut myself once (badly) before I realized I needed real skills to use such a simple tool. Counter to that, it took me several failures in complex organizations, to realize using a complex Agile framework does not translate to simple implementation.

Though I agree Scrum can address complex adaptive problems, I think it does so in a controlled team-level environment. I don’t see it working well on complex organizational-level environments.  It’s like shaving a yak with a straight razor.

On the other end of the spectrum, we have SAFe, LeSS, DAD, [enter your acronym here].  These frameworks have emerged, in part I believe, because complex organizations expect complex solutions.  We shave the yak, with an electric razor that Dr. Seuss would be proud of.

My Thoughts

First, though larger organizations are often complex, we do not need to make Agile frameworks even more complex. It seems like very few customers care how they get work done.  They just care that they deliver their product or service on time and within budget.  If you’re looking to add control points to process and governance, look for what will lower risk and increase value throughput.  Make processes as simple as possible and allow work to flow through your delivery system.  Simplicity (by removing dependencies) is the key. Dependencies break Agile.  While you should be careful not to add too many control points to a process, creating unnecessary work for everyone.  Additionally, don’t simplify too much either, resulting in chaos.  Focus on systematically removing dependencies and look for that happy medium.  As a result, you may just need three things.

Just be careful not to cut yourself.


The post Occam’s Razor and Agile Frameworks appeared first on LeadingAgile.

Categories: Blogs

When should you re-estimate in Scrum

Growing Agile - Thu, 06/30/2016 - 09:39
If we know one thing about estimates, it is that they are wrong. That’s okay, if they were correct we’d call them actuals. However estimates can be useful to help with some level of planning. Given that scope and requirements change all the time, we often get asked when you should resize items in Scrum, and […]
Categories: Companies

PMI-ACP Exam Prep with Mike Griffiths – Mind Map

Leading Answers - Mike Griffiths - Thu, 06/30/2016 - 04:41
For anyone studying for their PMI-ACP exam, I have created a mind-map of the PMI’s Exam Content Outline and my book contents. So here it is, on a single (large) page all the topics within the exam and the second... Mike Griffiths
Categories: Blogs

Article Review: Agile Teams Bend But They Don’t Break

Learn more about transforming people, process and culture with the Real Agility Program

In an out-dated model of work environments, there are clear “rights” and clear “wrongs.” Usually, the management or leadership determines this and they call it “Policies and Procedures” or “Mandates” or simple “Rules.” There are usually severe consequences for not following these, intentionally or accidentally.

In the new and emerging agile model, where team members focus their attention on taking action with little planning, reflecting, learning and planning frequently work environments are very different.

Instead of looking for people to blame when challenges emerge, an agile team looks for ways to learn and develop. The team can collectively embrace new ways to adapt to change together.

This is one of the things I am learning about in high-functioning agile teams.

I like the way Brian Milner addresses this in his article “6 Ways to Bring  Humility to your Agile Leadership Style.”

Learn more about our Scrum and Agile training sessions on WorldMindware.comPlease share!

The post Article Review: Agile Teams Bend But They Don’t Break appeared first on Agile Advice.

Categories: Blogs

How to Prepare to Strike Out on Your Own and Pursue Your Creative Calling

Pivotal Tracker Blog - Wed, 06/29/2016 - 18:30

Have you contemplated leaving the comforts of a company to strike out on your own to pursue a creative calling?

Perhaps you have an idea for a product or service. While there’s a strong pull to pursue it, hesitation maybe holding you back.

You’re worried about being good enough, attracting customers and clients, and how to make it all come together to find fulfillment, while at the same time tending to the practical side of things like paying the bills!

You’ve probably heard plenty of stories around striking out to build a startup, raise capital, and pursue a big idea. While that sounds exciting, you’re looking for an alternative approach…

Well, in today’s episode of FemgineerTV, we’re going to be tackling all these topics. To help us out, I’ve invited Jessica Hische, who is a letter, illustrator, and type designer.

Jessica began her career working for a design studio called HeadCase. She then went on to work for a prominent designer, Louise Fili, and eventually struck out on her own. Jessica has had notable clients like Wes Anderson, David Eggers, Tiffany Co, and Nike, just to name a few.

As you watch this episode, you’ll learn:

  • Steps you can take early in your career, such as how to reach out to people or companies you want to work for and learn from;
  • Why a day job can be immensely valuable and how to find one that is nurturing;
  • Why you don’t have to run a 10+ person design studio or a 100+ startup, and can be a solopreneur;
  • How to reconcile your client’s vision with your own creative desires;
  • How to get compensated fairly by conveying the price and value of your work;
  • Why learning tangential skills as a creative can be helpful when it comes to hiring; and
  • How to balance side projects and attract work with the day-to-day work that pays the bills.

Whether you’ve been in your career for 6 months or 6+ years, and have toyed with the idea of doing your own thing but weren’t sure how to set your own terms, this episode is for you!

For those of you who are interested in design and typography, check out Jessica’s latest book In Progress. We also talked about her popular post, “The Dark Art of Pricing,” which you can read here.

Listen to the episode on iTunes!

You can listen to the episode and subscribe to the podcast on iTunes. Please take a moment to leave us a review. Your positive review will help us get featured in the News & Noteworthy and bring more exposure to the work we’re doing as well as the talented guests we feature!

FemgineerTV is produced as a partnership between Femgineer and Pivotal Tracker. San Francisco video production by StartMotionMEDIA.

The post How to Prepare to Strike Out on Your Own and Pursue Your Creative Calling appeared first on Pivotal Tracker.

Categories: Companies

Knowledge Sharing

SpiraTeam is a agile application lifecycle management (ALM) system designed specifically for methodologies such as scrum, XP and Kanban.