Scaling Agile in a Mainframe Product Development Organization

Agile transformation in any organization will go through myriad of challenges that involves people, existing organization culture, technology/domain etc. Instead of seeing these challenges as obstacles, if you view them as opportunities to grow and improve, transformation will be more impactful and long-lasting. If neglected, the very same obstacles would severely damage the motivation and trust of employees.

In this experience report we would like to walk you through the agile transformation journey in a Mainframe product development enterprise by unraveling the challenges and the remediation steps that has helped us in keeping this journey alive. Specifically we would like to touch upon 

  1. Self-organizing teams
    • Resistance to change
    • Culture shift
  2. HR
    • Lack of role clarity and
    • Effective R&R in agile space
  3. Agile Engineering Practices adopted in Mainframe product development
    • Unit test automation
    • Continuous Integration

Along the presentation we’ll highlight few anti-patterns and the effects of ignoring them.

 
 

Outline/structure of the Session

  • Agile transformation journey - 20mins
    • Key challenges and complexity that includes technology/domain
      • Anti-patterns and the remediation steps
        • Exclude managers from the scrum team
        • Product owners shouldn’t prioritize technical debt
        • Increase the sprint duration from 2 to 4 weeks because the story cannot be broken
        • Postpone refactoring

Learning Outcome

  • Few Do's and Don’ts in the Organization Change Initiative
  • Learn the disadvantages of functioning in long iteration cycles despite market constraints
  • Gain insight on why you should not exclude Functional Managers from scrum team given that many mangers come from a product competency who can help shape products better

Target Audience

Senior Management/Leadership team, Agile Coach, Scrum Master, POs and team members

schedule Submitted 2 years ago

Comments Subscribe to Comments

comment Comment on this Proposal
  • Tathagat Varma
    By Tathagat Varma  ~  1 year ago
    reply Reply

    Pooja - do you ahve real-world stories where you find some of these anti-patterns and how did you address or resovle them? In tis conference, we expect attendees with reasonably good agile experience, and ideas like yours, as much interesting and relevant they are to the attendees, we expect them to kind of know them even before they sign up. They are looking for ideas and insights on how various practiitoners have dealt with some of these problems. I would like to see a deck, even if a strawman, where you have outlined your presentation and talked about some of these issues and how did you address them.

    -TV

    • Tathagat Varma
      By Tathagat Varma  ~  2 years ago
      reply Reply

      Pooja - in addition to my earlier question, can you guys convert this into a 20min experience report? If yes, please make the necessary changes to your proposal so that review panel could take a call.

      -TV

      • Pooja Uppalapati
        By Pooja Uppalapati  ~  2 years ago
        reply Reply

        Hi Tathagat,

        Based on the feedback I received from you and Ravi, I'm planning to convert this to a 20min experience report. I'm working on it and will make necessary changes to the proposal.

        Thank you for providing valuable suggestions,

        Pooja

  • Ravi Kumar
    By Ravi Kumar  ~  2 years ago
    reply Reply

    Hi Pooja,

    The proposal outline looks interesting and have to agree with you that ignoring or hiding the challenges is going to hurt even more. In my experience much of the challenges are due to a combination of things such as people, organization culture, technology and domain. In your response to Joel, you did mention about the 3 significant challenges and the anti patterns that are affecting transformation. We are narrowing down on accepting some of the best proposals and I think this certainly has portential for the final cut. Here is what I suggest 

    • Convert this presentation to a 20 min experience report as recommended by Tathagat.
    • Discuss briefly about the organization context where the agile tranformation initiative is unertaken.
    • List the challenges that also higlight the complexity of the technology/domain etc.
    • Discuss 3-4 anti patterns and the remediation steps if any you have taken.

    Get back to us on what you think.

     

    Best,

     

    Ravi

    • Pooja Uppalapati
      By Pooja Uppalapati  ~  2 years ago
      reply Reply

      Hi Ravi,

      Thanks a lot for the valuable suggestion.

      I think, by converting this to a 20 mins experience report, we can keep it short and crisp. The outline you suggested is of great help, I will structure the content around those lines and resubmit the proposal.

      Regards,

      Pooja

      • Pooja Uppalapati
        By Pooja Uppalapati  ~  2 years ago
        reply Reply

         

        We have re-worked on the proposal based on the suggestions/comments and brought in some more changes since we feel they are appropriate. The points below highlight the rational

         

        1. The talk is based on an agile transformation journey in a Mainframe products enterprise which comes with its own set of challenges that we wanted to highlight
        2. The Organization Change effort that was involved was a big undertaking and hence we wanted to bring in a senior executive to share the experience. We will now have our Sr. Director, Mainframe Business as a co-presenter.
        3. The title and the outline of the talk has been changed which resonates more with the enterprise mainframe practice.

         

        We would like to keep the talk at 45 min given the changes in the updated proposal. If for any reason you would want us to share just the 20 min experience report then we would have the following outline

         

        • Organization context – 3 min
        • Key challenges and complexity that includes technology/domain - 5 min
        • Anti-patterns and the remediation steps - 12 min
          • Exclude managers  from the scrum team
          • Product owners shouldn’t prioritize technical debt
          • Increase the sprint duration from 2 to 4 weeks because the story cannot be broken
          • Postpone refactoring

        We are in the process of creating the slides for the talk which will need few more days. We will upload a draft version for review at the earliest. Please share your comments/decision.

  • Prasad
    By Prasad  ~  2 years ago
    reply Reply

    Pooja,

    Also it will be a fit in Agile lifecycle theme than in Scaling agile..

    ~PP

     

  • Jerry Rajamoney
    By Jerry Rajamoney  ~  2 years ago
    reply Reply

    Hi,

    Thanks for the topic. Do you share more concrete points to support your topic content?. They could be pointers to techniques / models / etc. Also adding some real time scenarios will really help.

    Thanks,

    • Pooja Uppalapati
      By Pooja Uppalapati  ~  2 years ago
      reply Reply

      Hi Jerry,

      I'm converting this proposal to a 20min experience report. I'll make sure that it contains real time scenarios to support the content.

      Regards,

      Pooja

  • Kavitha Tumuluri
    By Kavitha Tumuluri  ~  2 years ago
    reply Reply

    Hi Pooja,

    Wonderful presentation. I am running a very Agile project in our company "Office 365 roll out to the entire organisaiton".

    With the experience of rolling out this project, the critical factors that were a priority are:

    • Are your Managers / Teams bought into the idea of working in Agile mode?
    • Is your Team / Managers enabled to work in agile mode?
    • Do you reward individuals or teams?

    Once we bought the entire team to the same thought process, the rest was easy and now Godzilla becomes a tame chimp.

    -Kavitha Tumuluri

    • Pooja Uppalapati
      By Pooja Uppalapati  ~  2 years ago
      reply Reply

      Hi Kavitha,

      Thank you for reading through the abstract and providing your insights.

      It is heartening to know that you have successfully rolled out an agile project in CA Technologies.

      Like you mentioned, enabling the team to work in agile mode is extremely important. Unless we sow the right seeds, we cannot expect to reap benefits.

      It is not enough to have our team go through class room trainings because agile is not a programming language. It is the way we need to think, the way we need to see and comprehend.

      They need to see value in the transformation and understand how they are going to benefit from it.

       

      Regards,

      Pooja

  • Steve Ropa
    By Steve Ropa  ~  2 years ago
    reply Reply

    Hi Pooja,

    I like what you say here.  Coupling your proposal with your answers to Joel really give me a feel for where you are headed. I actually wonder if putting some of that answer into your proposal body might cause more people to take a closer look.

     

    Steve

    • Pooja Uppalapati
      By Pooja Uppalapati  ~  2 years ago
      reply Reply

      Hi Steve,

      Thats a great idea! I will add some of the content from my answer to Joel into the abstract. That will definitely give the right perspective.

       

      Thanks for the suggestion,

      Pooja

       

  • Joel Tosi
    By Joel Tosi  ~  2 years ago
    reply Reply

    Hi Pooja,

        This is an interesting idea.  I would want more detail though - the description of how you are doing the session is just an outline without much detail.  The questions you start off with in the abstract don't necessarily seem to correlate to your outline or your learning outcomes.  Could you please help me understand that a little clearer as well.

     

    Also, the link to your slides goes to something on cloud computing.  Perhaps that link is wrong?

    Best,

    Joel

    • Pooja Uppalapati
      By Pooja Uppalapati  ~  2 years ago
      reply Reply

       Hi Joel,

       It is encouraging to hear that you found our idea interesting.

       Let me start by explaining how the outline, questions and learning outcome are connected to each other.

       Outline talks about the 3 significant challenges that most of the organizations face during their agile journey

      • resistance to change
      • lack of role clarity and
      • effective R&R in agile space

       We intend to drive the presentation by questioning some of the practices we follow which ultimately point back to the 3 challenges that are mentioned in the outline. Learning outcome also conveys the same. 

       I would like to elaborate by connecting the outline, questions and learning outcome using an example. One question is, are we rewarding a team for consistently improving their work culture and product quality or are we rewarding an individual for performing a heroic task? This question connects back to the third challenge we mentioned in the outline about effective R&R. We feel that rewarding an individual for the wrong values instead of rewarding a team for little improvements is an anti-pattern which will cause irreparable damage. Along the presentation we’ll highlight few more anti-patterns and the effects of ignoring them which is the ‘learning outcome’ of this session.

       I hope this gives you an idea of how the presentation is going to flow. If there is anything more you wish to know, we’ll be more than glad to provide the details.

       About the link to the slides - We are still working on the slides for this presentation, so we uploaded something I presented at the Grace Hopper Conference in 2013.

       


  • Liked Ravindra Chebiyam
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Mobile to Mainframe: Application Development and DevOps in the Application Economy

    Ravindra Chebiyam
    Ravindra Chebiyam
    Serajul Arfeen
    Serajul Arfeen
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    20 mins
    Demonstration
    Intermediate

    Agile delivery at the speed of business requires a seamless integration of Application Development, Delivery, and Operations.

    We would like to present a fresh perspective of DevOps initiative and how it integrates with agile based development of mobile and web based applications.

    In today's world of Application Economy, enterprises are rapidly developing mobile and web applications to stay competitive.

    In this process, they are required to interact with the backend "system of record".

    Large enterprises utilize mainframe at the heart of the dynamic data center as backend system of record.

    This integration of agile-based mobile app development dependent on mission-critical mainframe-based operations is driving the importance of DevOps initiatives within the application development organizations.

  • Liked Lance Kind
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Integrating the BDD process with Scrum

    Lance Kind
    Lance Kind
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    20 mins
    Lightning Talk
    Beginner

    How to effectively use Behavioral Driven Development in your Scrum process, from idea inception, backlog grooming, to Sprinting, and Sprint Demonstration.

  • Liked Lance Kind
    keyboard_arrow_down

    LEANing To Continuous Delivery

    Lance Kind
    Lance Kind
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Workshop
    Intermediate

    Transforming an organization's delivery model from quarterly or monthly releases to continuous delivery requires changes in requirements gathering, development, QA/ testing, and operations. Lean principles are a powerful guiding light into discovering what problems need to be addressed and how to get started. In this talk, I will describe how Lean principles can be applied to achieve a transformation to continuous delivery, and then provide a cycle model. At the end of the talk, is a workshop where the attendees will apply the Lean Principles to the cycle model and then analyze their own project for how to improve toward continuous delivery.

    Everyone will learn more than one new way to examine their project.

  • Lance Kind
    Lance Kind
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    Since the late nineties, the Agile books in the non-fiction aisle have steadily increased in number. It's common to see a book or three about Agile on a colleague's desk. It's also common to see such a book look practically new, the book spin showing no sign of having been opened. Non-fiction books are great at providing bullet points of things to do and reasons why. But non-fiction books are poor at:

    • inspiring,
    • creating emotional attachement (so the reader finishes the book), 
    • creating a full sensory environment for the reader,
    • describing a holostic environment, or
    • 'intriguing' a reader who is un-interested in the topic. 

    (This bullet list above is a good example of how non-fiction can excite thoughts who already know the story behind the bullets, but doesn't inspire much if the reader hasn't any context or background.)

    Fiction is well positioned to do the above because its number one job is to give pleasure and entertainment.  It can't be successful if it can't do this. The oral tradition of fiction has been part of human culture for millions of years, since a Cro-Magnon passed on a story to another, and upon re-telling some details were forgotten and the storyteller had to make them up.  Fiction is in fact is the most successful format for culture change as this is the format of the world's religious works and is responsible for guiding or changing the behaviors of billions of people.  The CIA and the Pentagon use fiction to develop scenarios which are used to create simulations to test preparedness.

    What force could be stronger than fiction for giving an individual the courage to initiate an organizational change in the face of uncertain co-workers and often antagonistic corporate environment?  What tester, developer, PM, director could not use the courage of knowing a "David verses the Goliath," "Legend of the IpMan," or "V for Vendetta" to not only understand the bullet points, but to have the stedfast to sustain in the face of resistance because they believe in the change as if they've lived that life, due to reading stories which placed them in one or many virtual versions of that world.

  • Liked Vasco Duarte
    keyboard_arrow_down

    #NoEstimates - How to improve software development predictability and profitability by focusing on what matters

    Vasco Duarte
    Vasco Duarte
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    480 mins
    Workshop
    Intermediate

    Stop wasting time and money

    #NoEstimates is an approach to software development that arose from the observation that large amounts of time were spent over the years in estimating and improving those estimates, but we see no value from that investment. Indeed, according to scholars Conte, Dunmore and Shens [1] a good estimate is one that is within 25% of the actual cost, 75% of the time.

    This is the same as saying: give us your money, we promise not lose more than 25% of it (with a 25% probability that we will lose a lot more). We don’t find that acceptable or productive for our industry. There must be better ways to manage software and product development.

    In this workshop we will review and analyze why we do estimates and how we can improve software and product development while reducing the time and money invested in estimating.

  • Liked Vijay Bandaru
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Scrum Master Experience Report

    Vijay Bandaru
    Vijay Bandaru
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    20 mins
    Experience Report
    Intermediate

    This presentation brings a different perspective for the Scrum Masters and helps them to become more powerful Scrum Masters through their enhanced soft skills. I am going to cover how the teams evaolve, how the change is resisted, how the teams behave, how Scrum Master can handle all these effective to make the teams deliver working software every sprint continuously.

    The information explained below is from my experience as Scrum Master and Coach. Below are the points that will be covered in the presentation:

    Primarily I am planning to cover the anti patterns that will push the teams back and where the Scrum Master can support the teams with his knowledge, experience and interpersonal skills. For example please find below some scenarios:

    1. In effective sprint planning: Team might miss some of the tasks while doing the sprint planning part 2 so they will anyway identify them during the development of the stories so these tasks take additional time which is not budgeted. So they will have to miss some stories which will impact the sprint goal. So I encourage the scrum masters to collect all such unidentified tasks on a separate colr sticky notes and during retrospective discuss with the team to see how much % of the capacity is gone for that tasks. At the same time are there any tasks in that list can be repeatable tasks (Eg: Code review) so this will help the team to come up with a tasks checklist which will help the teams to do effective sprint planning part 2 

    2. Partially ready stories pushed into the sprint: Sometimes product owners push the stories that are not fully ready and the team cannot say "No" in this case either the story gets changes during the sprint or it cannot be finished due to unknown factors. So Scrum Master to encourage the team to have a proper DOR (Definition of Ready) and get a working agreement between the PO and team so that they will work around it whilst they understand "Responding to change over following a plan"

    3. Cross functional behavior: Team generally does not want to become cross functional because they are fine with what they are. Scrum Master has to bring a change in their thought process and get them agreed to become cross functional. For this it takes time so SM has to also manage the management expectations with respect to set the expectation in the dip in productivity

    4. Pale retrospectives: This is another area where Scrum Master has to provide support to teams and get the liveliness and make the teams high performance teams

    5. Timeboxing: Most of the teams do not respect this important guideline. Again SM has to get the importance of this characterstic in to the teams and get them aligned towards this. So there are some examples which I can quote such as if different people arrive at different timings, how much time is wasted and how many times we need to recap on the points already discussed, how much gap created etc

    6. Stop starting and start finishing: This will cover to complete the stories/tasks that you are working before you pick up something. In general the teams pick up many items at a time and complete them close to 100% but not 100% so this will impact the sprint goal. In such case the SM has to provide inputs to the team to pick as few as possible but close them as soon as possible so this way the value delivery at the end of sprint is guaranteed

    7. Lack of importance for quality: In the hurry of completing the stories the team at times give less or no importance to the quality. So the probability of escaped defects or getting rejection for the stories is high. So the Scrum Master has to educate the teams to strictly define/refine/follow the Definition of Done for each story. I saw many teams having their DOD in the tools like VersionOne but not infront of their eyes. 

    8. I know when I see it: Information radiators. This will be the key for the teams to adjust their pace as per the principle #8. So creating big visible information radiators and updating the underlysing details frequently will bring attention in the team and they naturally tend to adjust their delivery mode as per the requirement 

     

  • Shiva Krishnan
    Shiva Krishnan
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Experience Report
    Intermediate

    My journey as an agile coach has been a great learning experience.

    In this session i intend to share some key learnings that contribute to effective coaching.

    I have aggregated my presentation under the following topics:

    • Coaching with Compassion vs coaching for compliance - why it is important to understand the team's needs instead of running the coach's transformation agenda. How do we involve teams in the transformation?
    • The coach’s mindset defines his/ her coaching - Many times coaches are not able to identify team problems due to their own biases. How can a coach be aware of such biases and overcome them?
    • Making your coaching visible - A common failure in transformations is that coaches are unable to make their progress visible. We will look at some interesting techniques to make  coaching progress visible
    • Involving stakeholders -How do we involve stakeholders other that the teams? why is it important?
    • Coach for a coach - Every coach needs a mentor . How do we effectively utilize mentors? what role do they play in a coach's growth?
    • Celebrating success - We often fail to talk about our successes and acknowledge teams. How did we do this in our organization?

    In each topic i will be sharing my experience, learnings and techniques that i used to overcome challenges.

  • Jeff Lopez-Stuit, CEC
    Jeff Lopez-Stuit, CEC
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    20 mins
    Pecha Kucha
    Beginner

    How can teams that have to deal with large, complex legacy systems get through planning and get to work? The title character of the classic American horror film, "The Exorcist" was a master at this..

    Pecha Kucha Talk Summary:

    • Introduction: Creating understanding through conversation can be very difficult for teams dealing with complex, legacy systems.

    • Introducing Regan McNeil: Poor Regan McNeil was starting go insane, but a team of doctors and specialists in close, face-to-face collaboration, couldn't solve her problem.

    • The Exorcist: The Exorcist knew how to have just enough conversation to get to work, so his team could deliver the value everyone had been working and praying for.

    • Summary: "In life, understanding is the booby prize". Sometimes the quest for understanding can be an impediment to delivering value. Having faith in self-organization, sometimes its best just to get to work.
  • Jeff Lopez-Stuit, CEC
    Jeff Lopez-Stuit, CEC
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Workshop
    Intermediate

    Core Agile practices establish visibility, remove impediments, and promote collaboration at the team level. Standup meetings, physical task boards, and focus on clearing impediments are well known practices to keep a team focused on the work, and establish a sense of flow towards frequent, tangible, and sustainable results.

    What about an entire program, when a large number of teams are involved? How can a large organization exploit the same core practices when there is highly interdependent work, and when there may be hundreds of people involved? How can Scrum be used to improve delivery times, increase quality, and promote sustainable development at a program level? How the can practices provide executive leadership the visibility they need into program progress?

    This workshop will introduce valuable, proven Scrum practices for large programs. Among the topics that will be discussed are:

    • What program management challenges are ripe for improvement through Agile practices?

    • The Program Impediment Board: Visible impediments, dependencies and milestones at a program level

    • The Program Stand-up: Lightweight activities to promote visibility, clear impediments and collaboration across the program

    • What does it look like when it’s working?: Improve delivery time, increase quality, and establish collaboration across the organization.

  • Liked Sophie Freiermuth
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Prioritizing user stories: using value to users as a key criteria

    Sophie Freiermuth
    Sophie Freiermuth
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    60 mins
    Workshop
    Beginner

    Product development in agile is always at risk of favouring velocity and developer's skills.

    Favouring velocity means that when it's time to select stories, the team will elect to do many short stories to keep velocity on the rise, or stable.

    Favouring skills mean that easy implementation may be selected, or sometimes tricky solutions which will give the developper the satisfaction of solving a difficult problem.

    The outcome of the story's execution and value to users is an important criteria, and I'd like to introduce you in this session to a technique that helps prioritize against two sets of criteria: technical difficulty and value to users.

    Using Personas, a tool from product design which I will explain, and a simple grid, this technique makes prioritization incredibly easy - which then enables the team to focus on getting stories done, rather than figuring out which stories.

  • Liked Sophie Freiermuth
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Integrating UX into the Agile Development Cycle - A case study over 3 projects

    Sophie Freiermuth
    Sophie Freiermuth
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Case Study
    Beginner

    User Experience design is a product design discipline which sits throughout a product's lifecycle, from inception to development to maintenance and all the way to retirement. Waterfall enabled the discipline to have ample time and produce extensive design, in a "big design upfront" approach which rarely involved technical capabilities, and resulted in difficulties in build. The adoption of agile by product development team has offered UX a unique opportunity to work in a much more joined-up manner, and expend the design into the development, enabling the entire team to react to change.

    As a UX designer, I have over the last 7 years developped a solid appreciation of working embedded in an agile development team, and would like to share my experiences through 3 specific projects, sharing my learnings to help development team on-board the UX practitioner, their tools, practices and skills.

    This session will be a case study over 3 projects, highlighting the learnings and steps of the integration of UX into the development cycle. I'm taking Alistair Cockburn's sequence of SHU-HA-RI to detail the progress of my practice and will pay great attention to sharing sufficient context that my experiences and outcomes can be translated to your own projects and team setups.

  • Vijay Bandaru
    Vijay Bandaru
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    20 mins
    Experience Report
    Intermediate

    I was part of a Large Scale Agile transformation in my organization and I was one of the Agile coaches there. As part of transformation we have created LeanOps teams to manage the technical debt, production incidents with a focused concentration. This article covers the following:

     

    - Why the trasnformation required?

    - What are the structural changes implemented?

    - LeanOps inception

    - Lean Ops working Model

    - Challenges with the LeanOps

    - How we addressed those challenges?

    - Goal oriented approach

    - Q & A

  • Sachin Natu
    Sachin Natu
    Naresh Jain
    Naresh Jain
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    60 mins
    Case Study
    Intermediate

    Adopting agile development practices and continuous delivery is becoming a norm in the software industry. Time to market and frequent releases have drastically reduced time available for regression testing. Inspection is considered wasteful. Faster feedback cycles during development is crucial. These have created lot of challenges for testing community, which traditionally relies on manual testing assisted by UI based test automation.

    This is an experience report of transforming testing practices across organization, which decided to embrace Agile. Today our testers are not trying to find defects, instead they collaborate with product management and developers to prevent them in the first place. In fact, during the appraisal process, the defects found by them is ignored, instead we focus on how much time they are able to dedicate to collaboration and exploratory testing. The boundaries between developers and testers have faded away and today quality is whole team's responsibility.

    We started with less than 20% of our testers with automation skills (mostly UI automation) and rest of them relying on manual testing. However, today, all our testers practice BDD. They have picked up Java & Groovy programming skills. They are able to contribute Workflow tests, Integration tests and Business Logic Acceptance Tests. Early collaboration and pairing is the norm. By the time developers are done with their tasks, all checks are already automated and hence we are able to deploy software every fortnight to production.

    Are your testers finding it hard to make this transition to an Agile mindset? This session will give you some concrete ideas based on our transition at IDeaS.  

  • Naresh Jain
    Naresh Jain
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    90 mins
    Tutorial
    Intermediate

    In order to achieve my goals, as a buyer of your product, I want awesome feature.

    AT: make sure your users stories don't get in the way.

    Users Stories, the tool teams use to break big ideas into small demonstrable deliverable, are easy to describe and challenging to write effectively. In this hands-on workshop you'll learn how to write great user stories that adhere to the INVEST principle. We'll learn various techniques to slice your stories using the vertical-slicing approach. We will discuss what elements should be included in the stories, what criteria you should keep in mind while slicing stories; why the size of your user story is important and how to make them smaller and efficient.

  • Saket Bansal
    Saket Bansal
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    Why organizations are adapting towards agile? Is it to get most out of their resources or is it about doing the right thing?

     

    Traditional mind set of achieving high productivity and using resources efficiently does not change easily, even when organization moves to agile they remain more and more worried about the team velocity. When I meet agile practicing companies or I attend event on agile I find that most of

    the focus is on delivering product backlog efficiently. We see lot of talks on how to make team more self-organizing so that they can do the things faster.  Even after moving to scrum or agile we keep ignoring the warning

    “There is nothing so useless as doing efficiently that which should not be
    done at all.”  —Peter F. Drucker

    When most of the organization starts with agile they takes it as an engineering process, and most of the team focuses too much on velocity, while to get maximum out of agile we need to look at Enterprise Agility, we need to look at an organization’s entire value stream—from idea to implementation, from concept to consumption.

    My talk would be focusing on need of organization agility and will introduce one of the monitoring tool “Life Cycle Profitability “which can help organizations in getting answers of questions like :

    • Should we delay the release by one month to fix the defects ?
    • Should we reduce the cycle time by adding one more team?
    • Should we delay the release to add functionality?
    • Should we delay the project by one month to get more innovative ?

    Life Cycle Profitability is based on principle “Take an economic view” introduced in book:The Principles of Product Development Flow , Donald G. Reinertsen . In my talk I will be showing how we can convert proxy variables like cycle time , velocity , technical debts  into Life Cycle Profit.

    I presented part of this concept in one of the conference and got good response, but I will create fresh presentation for this talk, since this time I will put more focus on expanding the model to calculate the Life Cycle Profit.

  • Michael Harris
    Michael Harris
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    For agile to work at scale in enterprises, there needs to be clarity around the hierarchy (or lack of hierarchy) of roles across teams and products to ensure sound governance and, perhaps more importantly, to offer career (and salary!) progression.  This presentation will propose a competency-based approach for the development of skills and competencies of the workforce, and thus creating a sustainable transformation in an enterprise. We will include experiences of implementing those components of the proposed model that have already been tried and tested.  Feedback will be sought from the participants.

  • Liked Alexey Pikulev
    keyboard_arrow_down

    “Help Me Do It Myself!” Growing a self-organization by using the Montessori Method

    Alexey Pikulev
    Alexey Pikulev
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    “Help Me Do It Myself!” Montessori is an innovative, child-centered approach to education, developed a century ago by Dr. Maria Montessori who was struck by how avidly the children absorbed knowledge from their surroundings. The goal of the Montessori method is to foster a child’s natural inclination to learn, where Montessori teachers guide rather than instruct, linking each student with activities that meet his interests, needs, and developmental level. But is this method only suitable for children?

    In this talk, I will demonstrate how to apply the Montessori education method in growing self-organized teams. We’ll discuss what Leaders may find useful and how to adapt this methodology in the day to day work of your organization.

  • ShriKant Vashishtha
    ShriKant Vashishtha
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    60 mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    Way back in 2008, when I started working in Agile, there was enough material available on Scrum and. However when it came to distributed aspect of it, people were still struggling with it. Based on working for years in this fashion, I realised that communication, trust, transparency and innovation are the core fundamental values towards successful distributed Agile implementation.

    In other words, as most of the problems were caused by softer aspects of skills (misunderstanding, miscommunication, non-availability of people, mistrust etc), humanizing the distributed team experience looked like the key for successful distributed Agile implementation.

    Based on working with distributed teams over the years, we discovered some distributed Agile patterns. Some of them got blogged from time to time. Those already available in form of blogs are as follows:

    The session is to share the these patterns and more (when to go for distributed Agile and when not etc)

  • Liked Anton Keks
    keyboard_arrow_down

    From Buzz to Reality: Online bank from scratch in 5 months

    Anton Keks
    Anton Keks
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Experience Report
    Intermediate

    I want to share a great story of building an online bank (with all its complexity of integration with backend systems and security) in an environment, not quite used to online banking at all.

    Being an Estonian, this project invoved traveling and spending some weeks in Russia, the country of the customer, to get a better understanding of all financial, business and software development peculiarities.

    This is a story of overccoming all the obstacles and solving all business and technical problems in just five months from the very start to a final launch. Believe me, this wouldn't be possible without relying heavily on Agile practices, both technical and organizational, and convincing everybody involved that this is the only way to go. A success story.

    The talk is partially based on the following article: http://codeborne.com/2013/03/14/online-bank-from-scratch-in-five-months.html

  • Sriram Narayan
    Sriram Narayan
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Talk
    Advanced

    Good engineering practices and fail-fast, iterative, low-ceremony processes help achieve team level agility. They are necessary but not sufficient to scale agility across the IT organization. In this talk, I'll address what else is needed and why. In particular, I'll address:

    1. Why plan-driven IT projects are a bad idea why we need value-driven projects instead
    2. Why a matrix org is a bad idea for IT and why we need cross-functional teams instead
    3. Why IT budgeting needs to change from being project-based to being team-capacity based