Agile teams work from the product backlog. In simple terms, this means we don’t know what we are going to deliver. We ask business executives to give us time, people, and money so we can deliver good stuff that they will like. How does this go over in the executive suite where we compete for funding?

Old time project managers were judged according to the triple constraints of time, cost, and scope. Be on time, on budget, and deliver full scope as defined by a signed statement of requirements. Along the way, meet the milestones and report success or failure compared to plan. Project managers promised cost reduction and/or revenue increases resulting in a payback period and a rate of return. It is hard to do this in the agile world where we don’t exactly know where we are going.

The agile principle number one is “Our highest priority is to satisfy the customer through early and continuous delivery of valuable software.” How should we measure this in a way that makes sense to the executives? They want a plan and they want numbers. Customers rarely know what they want until they see it, and in the agile world, we follow principle number two, “Welcome changing requirements even late in development.” We simply cannot predict what we will deliver and we do not have an exact plan.

In this presentation, we will show a model you can use to measure economic value, strategic value, and operational value during product development. The key is to measure these three things separately so one measure does not complicate and confuse another measure. We will also show the predictable points of contention to overcome so we make sense to the people who fund our work and expect measurable results. We will do this a way consistent with the Agile Manifesto’s values and principles so that our teams do not lose their agility.


Outline/Structure of the Talk

Why keep score?

Agile vs. Waterfall score keeping

Agile vs. Lean score keeping

Estimating and measuring customer satisfaction, strategic value, and operational value

Value at Epic, Feature, and Story levels

Managing the executive suite and leading the team

Learning Outcome

  1. Recognize and understand the challenge for reporting business value in the agile world.
  2. Learn multiple ways for recognizing and reporting business value.
  3. Review the many challenges business partners have in working with agile teams and learn how to show value the agile way.
  4. Use different value strategies for Epics, Features, and User Stories.

Target Audience

Scrum Masters, Product Owners, Business Leaders, Servant Leaders

Prerequisites for Attendees

No prerequisites

schedule Submitted 2 years ago