Project managers who are new to agile methods often have questions about how to track progress on agile projects. Some of the traditional measures don’t line up very naturally with agile thinking and agile practices, especially measures that are concerned with tracking team members’ time and comparing estimated and actual task durations. One of the main issues is understanding how to project realistic delivery dates with methods that don’t lend themselves to the Gantt approach.
How well are we served by our current metrics? Do metrics such as developer and tester productivity, ROI, and on-time / on-budget help us improve results? Or, do such metrics drive us towards negative behaviors? In this workshop, we describe the foundation for meaningful metrics. Workshop participants, via a series of exercises, translate this foundation into metrics that they can immediately use. This workshop results from the response I received during my Agile 2008 presentation on the CIO and agile teams. There was a great deal of interest on the topic of aligned, meaningful metrics.
James Shore (coauthor of The Art of Agile Development) and Rob Myers of Agile Institute help you examine the role of metrics on Agile teams. We take a broad survey of metrics being used on Agile projects, both traditional and innovative, and look at the value and dangers to the success of the team. We look at how the simple act of measuring, itself, can be harmful, and when it is well-justified. Metrics at every level of the Agile organization will receive scrutiny: Measuring value, team performance, progress, quality, and even code design attributes will be taken into consideration.
The software development industry has a poor track record with metrics. Many metrics are tangential to development’s goal of delivering business value, and are thus ill-regarded by agile developers. However, good metrics are important to management, in order to understand the status and progress of their teams, and to make projections into the future.
In this class we discuss velocity, burndown graphs, EVM metrics (CPI and SPI), and earned business value, including methods for calculation, why they’re important, and how they enforce (or fight against) agile values.
One of the most common questions asked of practicing Agile teams is:
How can we increase velocity?
Many teams have had to answer this question, but is it the right question? Velocity is an excellent measurement for determining project timelines and progress towards them but doesn’t give us any indication about the overall value of the features being delivered. All too often poor prioritization and solutioning are ignored because velocity is the KPI for the team. This session shows how to use value as a tool to ensure that you get more of the right things done.