Teaching An Old Dog New Tricks: Agile For Legacy Systems

Agile software development methods are now well established in many commercial organizations, and are starting to make inroads into government contexts. There are reports of software development projects using Agile methods that achieve significantly higher levels of productivity and quality compared with projects that used traditional methods. When it comes to brand new “start from scratch” software projects, a wealth of information, advice, training, and literature exists to help guide practitioners and speed them along the path to agility. Unfortunately, most such publicly available resources have relatively little to say when it comes to legacy systems. However, there is a small but growing amount of evidence that agile practices can yield compelling benefits for legacy projects—even those that have been previously successful using traditional methods. Our experience suggests that agile practices need to be customized and introduced in a different order into a legacy project. This presentation provides an analysis of the differences between legacy projects and new software development and the implications for the adoption of agile methods.

 
4 favorite thumb_down thumb_up 0 comments visibility_off  Remove from Watchlist visibility  Add to Watchlist
 

Outline/structure of the Session

1.Up Front Assertions

2.Why Is Legacy Different?

3.Situational Assessment

4.Whirlwind Tour

1.Facilities

2.Team

3.Agile Methodology

4.Technical Debt

5.Documentation

6.“Sprint 0”

7.Lifecycle Management Tool

8.Roadmapping

9.Automated Tests

10.DevOps Automation

5.Summary

Learning Outcome

Legacy Projects Can Realize Benefits By Adopting Agile Practices

Practices May Need To Be Modified

Consider Kanban or Scrumban

Staff Your Team Thoughtfully

Manage Stakeholder Expectations

Balance Cost of Delay with Cost of Failure

Adopt Systems Thinking Approach To Addressing Technical Debt

Reduce Complexity

There Is No Silver Bullet

Target Audience

Federal managers, project managers, contract officers, vendor managers, technical leaders, QA practitioners, software engineers

schedule Submitted 1 year ago

Comments Subscribe to Comments

comment Comment on this Proposal

  • Pradeepa Narayanaswamy
    Pradeepa Narayanaswamy
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Workshop
    Intermediate

    In agile teams, it’s inevitable that team members are expected to be more cross-functional and produce high quality product for their customers. How can agile team members become more cross-functional and take ownership of quality? Often times there seems to be a scarcity of testing talents in agile teams. How can agile teams attain highest quality product when working with very few or no testing talents? 

    For agile team members to take ownership of quality, Pradeepa Narayanaswamy exposes the power of “Pair Testing” that greatly supports providing faster feedback and producing high quality product all along as a team. For the scarce testing talents and an effective way to become more cross-functional, one approach is for team members to pair up on various (unit, integration, exploratory and several other) testing efforts that ensures the shared eye on quality and learning. Pradeepa talks about several pairing options and opportunities between various specialties in an agile team. She also talks about some “non-typical” pairing opportunities with DevOps, Operations, Sales, Marketing and Support members to name a few. 

    As a new or an experienced agile team member, learn how to spearhead this technique in your team at various levels and spread the buzz to other teams. As a tester, learn how to get the non-testing talents excited and experience the value of pair testing.

  • Liked Manjit Singh
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Agile Business Development? Yes, For Real...

    Manjit Singh
    Manjit Singh
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Talk
    Advanced

    The presentation is a case study of how Agile (Scrum/Kanban) can be applied to business development (BD).

    Business Development is about managing increasing amounts of investment or determining where to invest. Agile business development is about learning, failing and succeeding quickly in this process. This talk presents a case study from the presenter's personal experience in coaching, training and mentoring 6 BD teams how to apply Agile to their work. 

    The case study will cover how the following challenges of applying Agile to BD activities were addressed:

    • How do you define a Release?
    • How to do release planning?
    • How to define Sprint goals?
    • Do we write User Stories? 
    • Do we size the stories?
    • Do we calculate velocity?
    • How do you do Sprint planning?
    • Do we need a Scrum Master? Who should play this role?
    • What is the right duration of a Sprint?
  • Liked Michael Harris
    keyboard_arrow_down

    What if you need to scale agile but don't fit the models? A case study.

    Michael Harris
    Michael Harris
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Case Study
    Intermediate

    Agile scaling models tend to be based on scenarios where 5 - 10 agile teams are working on the same project/program/product/value stream.   The scaling models provide some good ways of organizing the work that needs to be done to plan, synchronize and demonstrate the outputs of the teams.  This case study describes the path of a development group that has 10-12 teams working on about 50 different software "products and services" within a reasonably narrow-focused energy company.  The case study describes how they went about paring down the SAFe model to meet their needs and then prioritizing the scaled-back scaling transformation using group inputs to a weighted shortest job first exercise.

  • Liked Richard Cheng
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Situational Retrospectives – One size does not fit all

    Richard Cheng
    Richard Cheng
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Workshop
    Intermediate

     

    Situation A: Your team is great. You’ve met all your sprint goals and your Product Owner is pleased with the results to date. Yeah!

     

    Situation B: Your team sucked. Zero story points completed last sprint. Team members are complaining and blaming each other for the failures.

     

    These two situations demand two very different retrospectives. The right retrospective can make a good team great and turn a bad situation into a learning opportunity. A bad retrospective can set a team back and create a non-safe working environment.

     

    In this session, attendees will explorer retrospectives techniques and examine the pros and cons of the techniques. The workshop will then explore scenarios and examine how to effectively run retrospectives across a variety of scenarios.

     

    Coming out of this sessions, attendees will have an understanding of applying the right retrospectives based on the state and needs of the team and projects.

     

  • Camille Bell
    Camille Bell
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    You probably started your Agile journey with Scrum, which helped. But regression testing still takes forever. New feature tests aren't what they could be and are hard to complete within the Sprint.

    If you have active product owners, the POs helped to improve your product, but there is still a disconnect, between the user story and the tests.  And how do you test "as a, I want, so that"?

    Now you hear you need Agile technical practices to keep improving and you find you need to automate. What are you going to do with your testers?  They really, really know your business, but they don't code.

    If you are a manager, a tester or a product owner, come hear Camille as she shares her experience successfully teaching manual testers Automated Test Driven Development and showing product owners how to write great Acceptance Criteria that are easy to automate.

    In this session you will learn:

    • How to get your product owners, testers and developers to understand each other
    • How to make your business scenarios unambiguous and testable
    • How to avoid brittle tests that need frequent rewriting
    • Which tools and languages are better for testers to learn and why
    • Strategies and techniques for testers to learn test automation
    • Where to find inexpensive and free resources to get started
  • Liked Thomas M Cagley Jr
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Budgeting, Estimation, Planning, #NoEstimates and the Agile Planning Onion - They ALL make sense!

    Thomas M Cagley Jr
    Thomas M Cagley Jr
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    There are many levels of estimation, including budgeting, high-level estimation and task planning (detailed estimation).  We can link a more classic view of estimation to  the Agile planning onion popularized by Mike Cohn.   In the Agile planning onion, strategic planning is on the outside of the onion and the planning that occurs in the daily sprint meetings is at the core of the onion. Each layer closer to the core relates more to the day-to-day activity of a team. The #NoEstimates movement eschew developing story- or task-level estimates and sometimes higher levels of estimation. As you get closer to the core of the planning onion the case for the#NoEstimates becomes more compelling and dare I say useful. 

    This presentation focuses on challenging the attendee to consider estimation as a form of planning. Planning is a considered an important competency in most business environments. Planning activities abound whether planning the corporate picnic to planning the acquisition and implementation of a new customer relationship management system. Most planning activities center on answering a few very basic questions. When will “it” be done? How much will “it” cost? What is “it” that I will actually get? As an organization or team progresses through the planning onion, the need for effort and cost estimation lessens in most cases. #NoEstimation does not remove the need for all types of estimates. Most organizations will always need to estimate in order to budget. Organizations that have stable teams, adopt the Agile mindset and have a well-groomed backlog will be able to use predictable flow to forecast rather than effort and cost estimation. At a sprint or day-to-day level Agile teams that predictably deliver value can embrace the idea of #NoEstimate while answering the basic questions based what, when and how much based on performance.

  • Liked Raj Indugula
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Dare to Explore: Discover ET!

    Raj Indugula
    Raj Indugula
    John Hughes
    John Hughes
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Talk
    Beginner

    Ever solve a jigsaw puzzle?  Do you typically design and document all your pieces before assembling the puzzle or know anything about the kind of picture formed by the puzzle?  Hardly.  Usually, the specifics of the puzzle, as they emerge through the process of solving that puzzle, affect our tactics for solving it.  

    This analogy is at the heart of Exploratory Testing (ET) - a fun, focused and powerful approach to testing that has been gaining in popularity in recent years.  While not a new idea, it is often misconstrued as being a random, flailing at the keyboard approach to uncovering problems.  Not quite.  ET is a disciplined practice that involves simultaneously learning about the software under test while designing and executing tests, using feedback from the last test to design the next.  It leverages traditional test design analysis techniques and heuristics, but design and execution become a single inseparable activity.  Within the agile context, there is a need for agile teams to augment their scripted automated tests with a manual testing practice that is adaptable, and ET provides the right fit.

    In this session oriented towards beginning explorers, we will gain a deeper understanding of what ET is, what it isn't, and discuss the essential elements of the practice with practical tips and techniques for: learning the system under test and capturing our understanding to design tests; designing tests on the fly using heuristics; executing tests and observing results; and finally, integrating ET into the cadence of an agile process.

  • Simon Storm
    Simon Storm
    Mary Lynn Wilhite
    Mary Lynn Wilhite
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    Are you struggling to implement Agile at your company?  What could be better than to learn from someone who has done it wrong over and over! We want to share our experiences pioneering Agile at a FinTech company.  After multiple attempts and through sheer stubbornness, we were we able to get it right and improve our release pace by 650% annually.  We will walk through where we went wrong, what we did right, and why we now understand that Agile cannot be successful without profound collaboration, Continuous Delivery, a DevOps culture and a desire to continuously improve.

  • Liked toddcharron
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Improv Your Agile or Scrum Stand-up

    toddcharron
    toddcharron
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Workshop
    Beginner

    Your Agile Stand-up Meeting Sucks!

     

    Most Agile and Scrum stand-up meetings I see are boring, lifeless, status meetings that don't provide any real value.

     

    In this session you'll learn:

     

    The REAL purpose of the daily stand-up

    The most common bad habits and how to correct them

    The habits good stand-up meetings have

    How you can use Improv to invigorate your daily stand-up

    A whole bunch of Improv exercises you can start using with your team right now!

  • Liked Marsha Acker
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Diagnosing and Changing Stuck Patterns in Teams

    Marsha Acker
    Marsha Acker
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    120 mins
    Workshop
    Advanced

    Do you want to be able to “trust the wisdom of the group” but find it difficult? Do you ever feel like you’re having the same conversation over and over again with no real progress? Do you ever feel like you are stuck in a disagreement and not sure how to move forward?

    If any of these issues are standing in the way of your work with groups and teams ‐ ‘how’ you are having (or not having) the conversation is likely contributing to your challenges. Research consistently demonstrates that team effectiveness is highly dependent upon the quality of the communication between team members. Yet it’s easy to get into the flow of daily work and be really focused on the ‘what’ in our conversations without much attention to the quality of ‘how’ we’re communicating.

    As an agile coach one of the most important ways you can serve your team is to help them unlock the wisdom that exists within the team itself and have the conversations they need to have. We’ll explore a framework for learning to ‘read the room’ using four elements for all face-to-face communication. We’ll do some live practice to apply the framework to a conversation and then identify some typical patterns of “stuck” communications that can lead to “breakdowns” in teams.

    This will be an interactive session with people actively engaged in both large group and small group discussions.

  • Tommie Adams Jr.
    Tommie Adams Jr.
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Talk
    Beginner

    The Zombie Retrospective - presented by Tommie Adams 

    So they say the retrospective is one of the strongest and most powerful tools in the agile scrum methodology tool kit, and is often overlooked or skipped. So how does a scrum master find ways to creatively explain and express the importance of this agile scrum ceremony, or even the basics of agile scrum in general. How does the scrum master explain the importance of banding together as a team in this brave new agile scrum world.  In many organizations, nowadays, the teams are even made up of outside vendors as well as in house associates. So how do you even start to pique the interest and the importance of team collaboration to a bunch of folks who are strangers to one another on a agile scrum team?  Even more specifically, how do you explain how the retrospective ceremony will help improve the way they work with one another over time?

    My answer: ZOMBIES!!!  Everyone loves zombies, right?  So come, take a bite!

    Tommie works for Marriott International in Bethesda MD. His background is in theater and communication which he studied at Grinnell College in Iowa. He has worked for Marriott International for 26 years with jobs ranging from reservation sales associate, to group sales manager, to functional IT tester to his current position as scrum master for the Marriott Rewards Agile Scrum Team. A native of Omaha, Nebraska, his hobbies include photography, cello and learning the ukulele, (you know, in case you were curious.) 

  • Martin Folkoff
    Martin Folkoff
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    “Running a football team is no different than running any other kind of organization…” -- Vince Lombardi

    Large enterprise scale software development is a team sport. In order to win in this game your software needs to be of the highest quality, which is almost impossible to achieve with testers on the sidelines. To build a winning a team you need the right players, but great teams don't always need the best players. Great teams win because they find ways to let the individuals on their team be great. 

    The wave of DevOps in the industry is in a broader sense an effort to let developers and system engineers do what they do best by eliminating or simplifying tasks that forced individuals into activities beyond their expertise. Pre-DevOps roles were like trying to ask Payton Manning to play both quarterback and running back at the same time. DevOps is the manifestation of empathy between two distinct sets of skills allowing the other to focus on what their best at. What about testers? How can the team expand their empathy to their role? What can the developers, program managers, and others do to let testers be great? Please join me if your curious to hear about the practices, tools, and culture that can make your software a winner with quality.

     

     

     

  • Liked Kate Seavey
    keyboard_arrow_down

    The Dark Side: Using Dark Stories to Help Product Owners Prioritize Mundane Maintenance

    Kate Seavey
    Kate Seavey
    Sheya Meierdierks-Lehman
    Sheya Meierdierks-Lehman
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Workshop
    Intermediate

    Delivery teams know from experience the importance of maintenance such as applying patches, upgrading, and conforming to the latest security and accessibility regulations. Product Owners, other value team members, and system stakeholders are focused on functionality and end user satisfaction. Maintenance isn’t sexy and can sink in priority until it fails to be included in releases.

     

    The Security community has been using Dark/Abuser/Evil Stories using the persona of a Black Hat Hacker to uncover vulnerabilities. In this workshop participants will assume the role of Delivery Team members and use the power of personas to write “Dark Stories” that bring to life the full impact of failing to perform necessary maintenance.  The intent is to give Product Owners a complete understanding of the importance of maintenance so they can appropriately prioritize maintenance and keep their systems strong.

  • Liked Brian Sjoberg
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Moving at the Speed of Molasses ... This Might Have Something to do with It!

    Brian Sjoberg
    Brian Sjoberg
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Demonstration
    Beginner

    Are you struggling with delivering a potentially releasable working product every iteration? Ever wonder what one of biggest reasons we have difficulty getting things done at the individual, team and organizational level are? Do you keep doing something even though you know it reduces your productivity and lowers quality? We are going to run an exercise that highlights one of the major culprits that you have all experienced and continue to experience. The exercise will likely ignite a fire that will help you, your team and your organization to become more productive and improve product quality. We will discuss ways to improve this at the individual, team and organization levels.

    Knowing this will help anyone to understand the consequences of not prioritizing and increase their desire to. This will lead to producing faster, higher quality products that should lead to delighted customers.

  • Maria Fafard
    Maria Fafard
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    Are you ready to take control of your career in Agile space? Then this session is for you! Learn to build your personal brand, establish your career goals and reach them using an Agile mindset. The session is equally relevant for beginning and experienced Agilists, for people in the midst of an active job hunt and these who have already secured their dream position but are not sure how to take their career to the next level.

    Learn how to job hunt like a pro and how to attract recruiters and hiring managers instead of relying on job applications; how to seek and secure a promotion; how to insure your Agile career; and how to network in a powerful and focused way.

    Find out how to leverage the power of social media in your brand building efforts, including the ultimate brand building and career management tool, LinkedIn: develop and maintain a strong LinkedIn profile that includes an Agile work portfolio, a powerful Summary, and a results oriented Experience section; develop an ongoing engagement with Agile LinkedIn community using status updates, LinkedIn publishing platform and Agile groups and grow and nurture your network. Bonus: you will learn about making the first steps towards thought leadership.

  • Liked Jessica Soroky
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Gaming Team Forming, Norming, and Storming

    Jessica Soroky
    Jessica Soroky
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    90 mins
    Workshop
    Beginner

    You’ve read all the books, you’ve gotten your certifications and now you have a team staring at you waiting for you to take the lead. There is no hesitation about how to perform the basics -- determining roles and scheduling meetings -- but how do you kick off an effective, high performing team?

    Whether you have a brand new team or you’re the new guy on an existing team, the tools and techniques you will learn in this session have proven to be effective from state government to private sector insurance.

    As an accredited Leadership Gift Coach Jessica focuses on vocabulary, shared responsibility, and team agreements. You will leave the session able to facilitate more than one Innovation Games and utilize them during your kick offs to set the stage for a powerful and effective team no matter what methodology they use.

  • Liked Dave Nicolette
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Automated Testing and TDD for Mainframe Applications

    Dave Nicolette
    Dave Nicolette
    schedule 2 years ago
    Sold Out!
    45 mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    Mainframe systems continue to play an important role in large IT operations. Contemporary software solutions often comprise components that run on multiple platforms, from smart phones and tablets to Windows, OSX, and *nix systems, and mainframes. 

    Is it feasible to extend modern software engineering practices like continuous integration; automated deployment; automated unit, component, and functional testing; and test-driven development to this venerable platform? It turns out to be quite feasible. There are several practical approaches to the problem, including commercial products from IBM and third parties; off-platform test drivers such as Cucumber, Concordion, and FitNesse; service virtualization products; on-platform approaches such as Java on zOS Unix System Services; hand-rolled mocking of CICS, DB2, and MQSeries resources; using IBM utilities to isolate and test individual steps from batch jobstreams; and isolated off-platform solutions based on hand-rolled test frameworks running under S390 emulation or mainframe-compatible compilers.

    This session provides a summary of several of these approaches. Unfortunately, it isn't feasible to run working examples on an actual mainframe in the context of the conference. We can show code that works and walk through it to illustrate approaches to test automation that are in use in real mainframe environments, and we can demonstrate the emulation-based solutions that don't require a connection to a real mainframe.

    To wrap up, we can have a group discussion about the specific testing and automation issues you have in your organization and how you might introduce test automation on your mainframe systems. Better yet, you can share your own stories of how you have solved this problem.