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People, Principles and Processes of Agile Project Management

Published on Sep 05,2019 14 Views

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Agile project management methodology may seem complicated and difficult to process as a system if you are unfamiliar or new to the concept. Currently, software developers, educational organizations, marketing teams adopt the agile project management methodology. It is a promising and rewarding concept which is easy to set up, therefore many companies and organizations can genuinely benefit from implementing it into their system. While there are various resources to educate on agile project management through software, books, and coaches; it is best to customize an agile project methodology to suit your business and team the most in order to reap its maximum benefits.

The topics discussed in this article are:

Guidelines for Agile Project Management

Agile project management methodologies are diverse and are unique to each team for their own requirements but few basic guidelines and principles are usually followed for decisions taken and for product development as well. An agile framework can witness success if these guidelines can be understood and implemented well. 

  • The highest priority is always to strive for customer satisfaction through punctual and constant software delivery.
  • Alterations in development should be welcomed even if there are late changes that are required. The customer’s competitive advantage calls for changes through agile processes.
  • A short deadline should be established and projects should be delivered often in a short span of time. Thus, the frequency of delivery of projects should be good.
  • The team members involved in the process must give their maximum constant input on a daily basis throughout the runtime of the project.
  • The working environment should be full of motivation and the individuals working on the project should take advantage of such an environment as well as get enough support from the team to effectively do the job assigned to them.
  • Communication should be focused on within the team. Face to face conversation should be the go-to form of communication as it is the most efficient way of conveying and relaying information in a team.
  • The project’s final product is the key measure of progress.
  • Agile project management methodology advocates for sustainable development in an organization. The stakeholders involved should maintain a constant pace throughout the project until its completion. 
  • It is imperative to have continuous attention to technical skills and good design. 
  • The teams should be independent enough to organize themselves effectively as that produces the best architectures and designs.
  • The teams should be able to assess their own performance at regular intervals and adjust accordingly for better efficiency.

Now that are you are aware of the guidelines that guarantee the success of agile project management, let’s check out the people involved when developing a product using agile.

People Involved in Agile Project Management

Every agile project methodology has its own set of unique team members and possesses some universal qualities and characteristics that agile team members should ideally possess.

  • T-shaped – A valued member of the team possesses wide knowledge about their subject and also has deep insight into it as well as experience and the ability to perform in one or more specific areas.
  • Cross-functional – These team members possess skills outside their areas of expertise. They have basic knowledge about graphic design principles, data analysis and even basic programming like HTML/CSS.
  • Adaptable – These team members have consistent output irrespective of the situation and environment they have to face or are present in. They are aware of implementing their skill set. 
  • Curious – Curiosity can lead to new discoveries and solutions which can prove to be more successful and efficient. Asking the right questions and challenging situations lead to better optimization and functioning of the system as there is scope for a better result.
  • Entrepreneurial – An agile team member always takes charge and control of the project. They don’t need to be told as they are proactive about developing campaigns where and when they sense a need for it.
  • Team-oriented – A team’s success is always determined by the dynamics between the team members. If the communication, coordination, and behavior is good and the team syncs well together, then that is considered as a win.
  • Striving for excellence – Agile projects promote faster delivery and better quality of work. Members who are committed to excellence through their work will never settle for average and will be fuelled constantly by their own dedication.

Next up, in this agile project management article, let’s check out the processes involved when developing a product using agile philosophy.

Process Related to Agile Methodology

The benefit that agile provides over traditional waterfall project management is the shorter development cycles produced in order to facilitate frequent product releases. This leads to better and speedy communication between the team and the client as the team can attend to the client’s needs sooner and effectively. The two most common agile frameworks used are Scrum and Kanban. All the existing frameworks follow the same process like their approach. 

What is Scrum - Agile Project Management - Edureka
                                       SCRUM
What is Kanban - Agile Project Management - Edureka
                                     KANBAN

Agile Project Management Planning

There should be a vision behind every project driving it. Before commencing work on the project, the team should be well accustomed to the objective and goal as well as the value it adds to the organized along with its reception. Project scope can be devised in this case. The main function of applying agile project management and using its methodologies is its ability to apply changes and make additions to the project with ease. 

Creation of Product Roadmap

Roadmap refers to the disintegration of the properties that the final product constitutes of. This is the most vital part and step of the planning stage as at every level the team will be responsible for building these individual features. A product backlog needs to be developed too which includes an entire list of all the features and deliverables of the final product. This backlog will be helpful as the team plans sprints in the later processes.

Release Planning

In traditional waterfall project management, there is just one decided date for implementation after the entire project has been developed and worked on. Whereas, in agile project management the project adopts the use of shorter development cycles called sprints with every cycle consisting of its own features. Before the kick-off of the project, a plan will be devised for feature releases and at the beginning of every sprint, the release plan for that particular feature will be studied and assessed.  

Sprint Planning

At the beginning of each sprint in the project, the stakeholders have to decide what the features are and what will be achieved by each person during that sprint as well as how it will be achieved. The task burden should be segregated equally among team members so they can be accomplished and completed efficiently during the sprint. The workflow should be ideally documented for team transparency and fostering a better understanding and trust in the team.

Regular Meetings

It is always a good practice and beneficial to conduct daily meetings regularly to help the teamwork better during each sprint. The meeting which is conducted also helps to assess possible issues or acknowledge the changes to be made if any. In the meetings, the team members will be required to individually enlighten the entire team on their to-do list and what was accomplished the day before. These meetings should be short and quick as they are not supposed to be general meetings or a problem-solving platform. 

Sprint Review and Sprint Retrospective

Two meetings should be conducted after every sprint. The first meeting will focus on the sprint review where the project stakeholders will be presented with the finished product. It is important to conduct this meeting as it facilitates open and transparent communication with the stakeholders. Any issue or problem that arises can be discussed face to face. The second meeting will be a sprint retrospective meeting with the stakeholders where the main point of discussion will be a whole assessment of the sprint. Points which will be focused on are what went well and what did not go well during the sprint, what could have been and done better, the allocation of tasks for each member and its outcome as well as the final result. 

Conclusion

The transition to agile project management methodology is never easy with its specific processes, features, and roles but it is a much more streamlined and rewarding procedure for better ROI. It helps in changing your mindset and approach towards a project. 

That’s it, folks! With this, we have reached the end of the article. You could also take a look at Scrum Master Interview Questions while you’re at it.

Got a question for us? Please mention it in the comments section of this article and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

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