In 2011, I worked for Qik, a startup that got aqcuired by Skype. At that time Skype was in the middle of an agile transition. Аfter aquisition, Qik team was told to adopt the Agile process used by Skype. I worked with the team as an agile coach. After adopting Skype's "agile" process, our ability to deliver was brought down to almost zero. In this talk, I'll tell you the story as it happened, analyze the key problems that we faced and describe how we finally solved them. Come to this talk, if you want to avoid similar mistakes. If you are already through with your transition, I would be interested to know if you see any patterns. 

 
 

Outline/Structure of the Case Study

  • Being agile doesn't necessarily require a process: how things work in a startup (10 mins)
  • Enterprise Scrum as it was implemented in Skype (10 mins)
  • How we adopted it and what it lead us to (10 mins)
  • Key problems and the solution (15 mins)

Learning Outcome

  • How you can misunderstand Scrum at an enterprise level.
  • What pitfalls you can meet when adopting agile in an organization that is developing a technological platform.
  • How to speed up delivery when you have a huge system consisting of many components with a lots of dependencies.  

Target Audience

ScrumMasters, agile coaches and managers at all levels

schedule Submitted 5 years ago

Public Feedback


    • Liked Ashish Parkhi
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Ashish Parkhi / Naresh Jain - Techniques to Speed Up your Build Pipeline for Faster Feedback.

      45 Mins
      Experience Report
      Intermediate

      I would like to share my experience and journey on how we brought down our Jenkins build pipeline time down from over 90 minutes to under 12 minutes. In the process, I would share specific techniques which helped and also some, which logically made sense, but actually did not help. If your team is trying to optimize their build times, then this session might give you some ideas on how to approach the problem.

      Development Impact - For one of our build job, below graph shows how the number of builds in a day have increased over a period of time as the build time has reduced. Frequency of code check-in has increased; Wait time has reduced; failed test case faster to isolate and fix.

      Business Impact - More builds leading to quicker feedback and faster story acceptance and less story spill over.

    • Liked Dhaval Dalal
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Dhaval Dalal / Naresh Jain - The Tao of Transformation

      90 Mins
      Workshop
      Beginner

      "To know, is good. To live, is better. To be, that is perfect." - The Mother

      During the Agile adoption, its a common complain that many team in many organizations get caught up in the ceremonies or mechanics of Agile and fail to understand/appreciate the true value and spirit of Agile. And because of this, the original intent of the Agile movement itself is lost. This is a serious issue!

      This workshop will highlight, a well-proven approach to transformation (not adoption) and show the distinct steps in this journey that an individual or a collective goes through when learning anything new. Activities, serving as examples, in the workshop, will focus to show the journey - that is, how to begin with rituals, then gradually move to practices, arriving at principles and eventually internalizing the values. Witnessing this gradual process of transformation will help participants discover for themselves their current progression. We hope this will serve as a guiding light during their Agile journey.

      Finally, we will leave the participants to ponder upon and discover for themselves their ideals in life and work as this is not only applicable to software development, but also to any discipline where humans are involved, including life itself.

    • Liked Sachin Natu
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Sachin Natu / Naresh Jain - Inverting Test Pyramid - A First Hand Experience Report

      45 Mins
      Experience Report
      Intermediate

      Test automation is extremely crucial in adoption of an agile delivery. However, it can take one for a ride, if the approach is not correct. In this sensational, heart throbbing, experience report, we'll share our story of how we turned around an inefficient, expensive automation style to lean, efficient style. In addition to sharing a real-world example, we'll also share some of the key challenges we faced and how we solved them. If you are convinced about the Testing Pyramid, but are struggling to invert it, then this session is for you.

      Business Impact:

        Earlier Defect Detection - Higher test coverage at Unit/Intermediate layers lead to earlier defect detection. Reduced number of issues found on higher test environments/Production. Reduced cost of defect fixing.

        Reduced maintenance cost - UI tests are fragile and costlier to maintain Vs backend tests. No of changes in services layer are comparatively less.

        Reduced test execution time - Backend tests are much faster. Almost 7-10  times faster than UI Tests - improved build certification time.

        Test feedbacks are naturally distributed across layers of application. Test feedbacks are more pin pointed/ granular.

    • Liked Prafulla Girgaonkar
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Prafulla Girgaonkar / Naresh Jain - eXtreme Programming for ETL and Data Analytics

      45 Mins
      Experience Report
      Intermediate

      Over the last decade, eXtreme Programming practices like User Stories, Evolutionary Design, Test-Driven Development (TDD), Behavior Driven Developer (BDD), Refactoring, Continuous Integration and Automation have fundamentally changed software development processes and inherently how engineers work.

      Having experienced various benefits from XP practices on our J2EE stack, our team started to apply these practices to extract, transform, and load (ETL) and Data Analytics side of our product. Unfortunately, there is very little guidance available in this context, esp. for the SAS Platform. Right from finding the unit testing framework to structuring the code to designing our modules and setting up a Continuous Integration builds, our team had to figure out everything, the hard way.

      Join us to understand the challenges we faced during this process and how we resolved these challenges.

    • Liked Sudipta Lahiri
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Sudipta Lahiri - 10 (Understated) Lessons from TPS!

      Sudipta Lahiri
      Sudipta Lahiri
      Sr. Vice President
      Digite Inc.
      schedule 5 years ago
      Sold Out!
      45 Mins
      Talk
      Intermediate

      I talk about 10 lessons from Toyota Production System that are important but not talked about.

      Lesson I: Getting the foundation right!

      Lesson II: Be patient to get the foundation right!

      Lesson III: 3S vs 2S

      Lesson IV: Three stages of Seiso

      Lesson V: Understanding Seiketsu

      Lesson VI: Implementing Shitsuke

      Lesson VII: Improvement initiatives are harder to sustain

      Lesson VIII: Keep broadcasting your success

      Lesson IX: Kaizen vs Sustenance

      Lesson X: Lessons from 3MUs and Visual Management

       

    • Liked Anand Bagmar
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Anand Bagmar - The Agile “Chalta-Hai (It’s OK)” Manifesto

      45 Mins
      Experience Report
      Intermediate

      The Agile Manifesto was formulated by 17 people in 2001. We know the principles of the Agile Manifesto … but do we really understand it?

      Depending on the organisation culture, the team culture and various other factors, they reach varying levels of Agile adoption. Martin Fowler talks about the levels of adoption and the path to get better via his post on “Your Path through Agile Fluency”.

      Not surprisingly, not all Agile project implementations are successful.

      This session is going to take you through a journey to talk about some of the Myths of Agile and also behaviors that inhibit organisations and teams to reach great(er) heights in Agile Fluency to achieve Agile’s benefits.  As a result, the Agile Manifesto has remained on paper, but teams have come up with their own ‘workarounds’ - which are not truly solutions to solve a complex problem well.

      We accept it because of our “chalta-hai (it’s ok)" attitude. At the end, what are we then left with? The Agile “Chalta-Hai (It's OK)” Manifesto.

    • Liked Yilmaz Guleryuz
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Yilmaz Guleryuz - Fibonacci Pairing: Learning through Collaboration

      Yilmaz Guleryuz
      Yilmaz Guleryuz
      incognito
      WareNinja
      schedule 5 years ago
      Sold Out!
      45 Mins
      Talk
      Intermediate

      According to many researches, we learn the best when we experience it personally, and we comprehend when we teach to someone else.

      So if you want to achieve ample understanding of a topic, you’ll need to follow these basic steps:

      "Listen -> Observe -> Do -> Share"

       

      Pair-programming is a well-known practice, and it has been introduced by one of the thought leaders of Agile world, Kent Beck. I respect any technique that encourages collaboration and interaction among teams, and gets teams to communicate better.

      However, if you want to establish understanding of mastery or a skill-set, and increase the shared knowledge across your team members, then you need to re-think & apply new techniques.

      In this talk, I’ll share about What-Why-How of "Fibonacci Pairing" technique, which is yet another discovery from practice.

      The main goal of that technique is to establish understanding and improve collaboration, without overcrowding by artificial ways like lecturing.

      Fibonacci Pairing is simple yet very effective technique that can improve team work. This technique should be regarded as a complementary way to improve team culture effectively.

      We will elaborate with practical examples, real life experiences, and applicable ways onto different contexts.

    • Liked Vishal Prasad
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Vishal Prasad - Agile Project Forecasting with Focus Factor

      Vishal Prasad
      Vishal Prasad
      Lead Consultant
      ThoughtWorks
      schedule 5 years ago
      Sold Out!
      45 Mins
      Talk
      Intermediate

      How many deliverables should we commit to our customers in, say, the next two weeks? An intriguing question asked by many Agile teams at the beginning of every iteration. The answer to this question depends largely on the team's thinking, philosophy, and skills -- which unfortunately cannot be measured. Then how do we forecast the deliverables?

      How about a mathematical formula that provides an unbiased control based on the historical achievements of the team, which can be used for prediction? That's exactly what focus factor does.

    • Liked Unnat Gupta
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Unnat Gupta / Shree Damani - Calculating RoI on Agile Enablement

      45 Mins
      Talk
      Advanced

      "We want to be Agile!!...

      Why?

      Because its cool, and its becoming a norm, it will help us to cope with changing requirements, help us deliver faster etc etc."

      Isn't this a common sentiment in organizations struggling with the ever changing user/customer taste?

       

      With Agile going main-stream with most organizations looking to have at least a few business critical projects run in an Agile way, the question of ROI comes up. Shifting from a traditional way of building software to an Agile way, requires change and as any good business leader would know; change is not free. Business leaders would like to understand and justify the return on Investment to make this shift. In our talk, we will be talking about how to look at the Agile process holistically and how this process affects budgeting and how early value realization can help offset the cost of change. We will also discuss stories of other in house IT shops and product houses who have made this shift and the journey they have undertaken

      From our experience of working with such organizations, we have found that for these process-focused Agile adopters, much of their measurements include:

       

      - how long is our stand-up?

      - how long is our build?

      - how many stories do we have?

      - how many points can we fit into a sprint? etc.

       

      From their perspective, they already have plenty of metrics. Often it's also the case that they're getting benefit, just because common sense does kick in behind the scenes, and because they're delivering more frequently as a result in the reduction of documentation, so they don't always run out of money either. That leads to bad habits, possibly, rewarding wrong practices. In this talk we want to discuss metrics we have used on the projects and have found useful. Metrics like: Cycle Time, Time to market (also called Lead Time), Collaboration, Quality (in terms of code complexity , code coverage, test pyramid) and bus factor. One thing to note is that any of these metrics alone would not provide holistic way of measuring benefit, and hence a combination of them is required.

       

    • Liked Unnat Gupta
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Unnat Gupta / Shree Damani - Know Your MVP!!

      45 Mins
      Talk
      Intermediate

      MVP is defined as : "that version of a new product which allows a team to collect the maximum amount of validated learning about customers with the least effort."It doesn't say a thing about the product being valuable to the customers or market segment.

      MVP is minimum viable product *NOT*  minimally marketable feature set / first release!  MVPs are the experiments we learned from on the way to our first release of the software.

      To us the core of the difference between "Minimally Viable Product" and "Minimally Marketable Product" is in the purpose.  An MVP's purpose is to learn, an MMP's purpose is to serve.  Understand the problem vs address the problem.

       

    • Liked Unnat Gupta
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Unnat Gupta / Shree Damani - Prioritization Techniques: Lets move beyond MoSCoW!!

      90 Mins
      Workshop
      Intermediate
      • Have you been in a situation where everything gets prioritized as MUST HAVE?
      • Have you been in a situation where you have find it difficult to get different stake holders to agree on relative priority of different features?
      • Most of the time is spent in discussiing low value features?
      • Whoever screams the loudest, gets their pet features prioritixed high?
      • Do you want to learn some more prioritization games/techniques that can be used to start prioritizing at Feature level and subsequently refine it to story level?
      • You feel the current technique(s) you use for prioritization are time consuming and ineffective?

      If answer to any of the above questions is yes, this is the workshop for you to attend

      Why Prioritization?

      Customers are never thrilled to find out they can’t get all the features they want in release 1.0 of a new software product. In reality, customer expectations are high, timelines are short, and resources are limited. Any project with resource limitations has to establish the relative priorities of the requested features, use cases, or functional requirements. Prioritization helps the project manager resolve conflicts, plan for staged deliveries, and make the necessary trade-off decisions. Thus, requirement prioritization is used in Software development for determining which requirements of the software product/application should be included in a certain release. Requirements are also prioritized to minimize risk during development so that the most important or high risk requirements are implemented first.

      Several methods for assessing a prioritization of software requirements exist. In this workshop we are going show some of techniques/games we have used for feature prioritization.

       

    • Liked Sarabjit Singh Bakshi
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Sarabjit Singh Bakshi - Art of Processing People in batches - Lets Re-factor our Schools

      45 Mins
      Talk
      Intermediate

      My talk will be highlighted on the currrent Education System and how Agile and Lean Mechanisms can help us refcator our education System . As we all proceed in this digital world its important to understand what extra can we do to make our children education more informative and creative . Using Agile and Lean from Gurukuls to Modern school- what do we think -Is the current education system is helping our students . Would like to give an insight on where are we going how we can improve it and how we all can contribute to make it better. We can talk on using Agile as Change Agent towards transforming the way our children precieve learning. 

    • Liked Ajay Avinash Solanki
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Ajay Avinash Solanki - Agile Coaching - Giving and Receiving Feedback

      90 Mins
      Workshop
      Advanced

      Agile is based on crossfunctional and self organizing teams. Agile is based on the Plan, Do, Review and Adapt Feedback Loop. Feedback is the basis of Agile. Feedback can be amongst team members, between Scrum master and the team, Product owner and Scrum Master, Stakeholders and Product Owner and various combination of the same. We generally give a deficit based feedback. We point out to the short commings, mistakes, fix blames etc. This is a very emotionally chaged discussion which leads to a lose lose situation and a bad relationship. Contrary to this Giving feedback should be based on strengths. It is a planned approach which has to be rehearsed before hand. The main objective of giving the feedback is to find out solution instead of fixing the blame. Let us learn the techniques by which this can be made possible.

    • Liked U S VINEESH
      keyboard_arrow_down

      U S VINEESH - Agility lessons from Nature

      45 Mins
      Talk
      Intermediate

      When Darwin said “fittest,” Darwin did not mean strongest or fastest or even smartest: he meant most adaptable, best at handling change.

      Ants have existed close to more than 100 million years now and they can be considered as one of the most flourishing beings on our earth. They have colonized almost every landmass and they thrive in most ecosystems. Have you ever wondered what makes them so successful?

      This success of theirs in so many environments has been attributed to their social organisation and their ability to modify habitats, tap resources, and defend themselves. Ants are one among the most agile creatures that we have seen till date.

    • Liked Nilotpal Das
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Nilotpal Das - Head First Agile and Organizational Transformation

      45 Mins
      Experience Report
      Intermediate

      This is a collection of real time case studies of failed projects. It is an autopsy of these failed projects studying why these projects failed and how application of agie principles could have saved them.

      It is also a study into the organizational culture, behavioral attributes and the people issues and how agile addresses them.

      And finally it is a study of why doing a few projects with agile is not sufficient. How complete organizational transformation into agile practices is necessary for long term success for projects, processes and people.

    • Liked Unnat Gupta
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Unnat Gupta - Agile Business Analysis Anti-Patterns

      Unnat Gupta
      Unnat Gupta
      Sr. Business Analyst
      ThoughtWorks
      schedule 5 years ago
      Sold Out!
      45 Mins
      Talk
      Intermediate

      In this talk we will pick up various (5-7) business analysis anti-patterns, specially for Agile projects, that either we ourself have practiced at some point of our BA carrier or have seen other BA's doing. We will talk about the symptoms which act as a sign of presence of these anti patterns, why are the problems associated with them and what are the ways to get rid of them.

      These anti-patterns may range from behavior with customers to behavior with the own team.

      Some of the anti-patterns we are planning to discuss:

      1) BA aka The Order takers
      2) Task (UI/backend) based stories
      3) Engrossed in too much detail to miss the view of bigger picture - story verus feature 
      4) As a “user”...., where the user is either "system" or "product owner"
      5) Leave the NFRs / CFRs to the Developers/Tech lead
      6) Detail the hell out of stories
      7) Focus on Happy Paths only
      8) Focus on building a software over solving the real problem
      9) Resist change in requirements

       

       

    • Liked Geeta
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Geeta / Joe Zachariah - Chicken Soup for the Agile Soul

      45 Mins
      Experience Report
      Intermediate

      Going by the adage - "Without struggle, there can be no progress", we intend to share some extraordinary stories that have and can change the way we work and interact in the Agile space. Every team, whether Agile or not, goes through the forming, storming, norming and performing stage. The storming phase is when an Agile team can look inwards using some Agile best practices to tide over the storm. The pressing challenges that a team can face during the storming phase can be categorized into:
      1. People
      2. Process
      3. Technology

      Through our talk, we would like to share some specific challenges that we faced in each of the above categories and how we overcame them -

      =================================================================================

      Example for people:

      Anti-Pattern / Challenge : In a distributed environment, code got overwritten in spite of an existing version control tool
      Conclusion : Better self organization within the team
      Resolution : Cross pollination, face to face communication, automated notifications
      =================================================================================

      Example for process :

      Anti Pattern / Challenge : Team got together to solve a problem and very little got accomplished due to external dependencies
      Conclusion : The need for more collaboration and the right problem solving protocol
      Resolution : Adopted design thinking, created cross functional teams, applied 'Pareto' principle
      =================================================================================
      Example for technology :

      Anti Pattern / Challenge : Different deployment scenarios and technology choices
      Conclusion : The need for continuous and collaborative integration
      Resolution : Created an inhouse one click seamless deployment tool named 'Deployer'
      =================================================================================

      Today as a team we have expanded beyond the bookshelf, matured as agile practitioners. And now we’re working hard on a creating a visionary path. Improving the Agile world around us is part of our mission of learning, sharing and growing. The talk will re-emphasize our journey through agility and constant evolution.

       

    • Liked Pankaj Kanchankar
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Pankaj Kanchankar - Line Managers - an Endangered Species in Agile

      Pankaj Kanchankar
      Pankaj Kanchankar
      Agile Coach
      ThoughtWorks
      schedule 5 years ago
      Sold Out!
      45 Mins
      Talk
      Intermediate

      The matrix organization of yore relied on maximizing returns on each skillset. This lead to having line managers and practice horizontals.
      Engineering managers looking after developers and practice managers looking after the respective practices of BA, QA and PMO. This lead to having multiple lines of reporting for team member whilst on the project.
      In Agile teams, focus is on the self organising teams of empowered employees working towards common success criteria (project success is team success). Not everyone can be a PO or a Scrum Master. So is the role of so called line managers or practice managers become redundant?
      Whats their role in the agile teams?
      How their role needs to transform

      In this talk I will be addressing these questions. Bring out how some of their responsibilities are now taken up by the team or Product Owner or Scrum Master. I will also be suggesting how line managers can take this as an opportunity to morph into more meaningful roles that help the organization and teams. 


    • Liked Jisha Sharma
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Jisha Sharma / Jyoti Prakash Datta - People Dynamics – Agility to our Rescue

      45 Mins
      Experience Report
      Intermediate

      We (Jyoti and I) believe Agility is the mindset that makes you successful by doing what makes sense at any given point. Success in IT projects comes from not only following the mechanics but also applying your skills to people dynamics.

      We plan to talk about our experience where agility has helped us fight back in difficult situations than take a flight back. 

      Key topics

      People dynamics - 

      1. Flexing our styles
      2. UX at the center - Personas, Euro/Rs/Dollar test, MoSCow
      3. Workcell
      4. Big picture
      5. Customer shoes

      Agile Mechanics -

      1. Quantify priority
      2. Deliver in sprint 0 too
      3. Risk burndown

      Experience sharing

      1. Varied experiences 
    • Liked Jagadeesh Balakrishnan
      keyboard_arrow_down

      Jagadeesh Balakrishnan - “Agile Project Management – Is it an Oxymoron?”

      45 Mins
      Talk
      Intermediate

      Often than not, project management is perceived to be an administrative activity giving rise to lengthy documentation and clear “to do” instructions to the team. On the contrary, Agile is proclaimed to be the new, trendy Avatar proclaiming less or sometimes nil processes to follow and having a “Do it yourself (DIY)” team culture! What the untrained eye misses to see is a fine balance that connects project management philosophy with agile values. This talk will focus on demystifying the art of Agile project management by raising common questions relating “Agile” & “Project Management” and by providing answers that result in a successful marriage of the two.

      The talk is delivered based on the experience gained by working with Singapore clients embarking on agile and also as a result of experimenting agile ideas in the Master of Technology class with Software Engineering students.