Best Ways to Implement Agile Methodologies into Your Company
So, you did your research and you think an agile framework for project management is meant for you. However, before you dive in, you need to make sure you have asked yourself the important questions. Are you ready to plunge into a deeper level of risk where you start a project without knowing how things will turn out towards the end? Is your team flexible enough to be comfortable with an agile methodology? And does your company hierarchy allow everyone to collaborate equally as a team?
If an agile framework is properly implemented, it can definitely benefit any company in effectively delivering projects to clients. Although there are a number of ways to go about it, the basic structure of the implementation of an agile framework is largely the same. It can be broken down into 5 simple steps.
Step #1- Identify Your Vision
This is often deemed as the most important step in an agile framework implementation process. You need to 100% clear on what your business is planning to achieve with your project. This part basically answers the question of why you are doing what you are doing.
It is important to have your vision clear before setting out to achieve something. You may need to call your team (managers, directors, and stakeholders, etc.) over for a strategy meeting where the company vision is openly discussed.
Step #2- Identify a Roadmap
Also known as the product roadmap, you identify the requirements of your product along with tentative deadlines for when you will develop each of these requirements. This step basically helps you create a path that takes you towards the achievement of your vision. It is important to note here that deadlines and requirements are only tentative here, therefore you ideally do not spend more than a few days on this step.
Step #3- Build a Timeline
In this step, the product owner gives the team a tentative delivery date for the product. Since a project managed via an agile methodology is delivered periodically, the timeline for each delivery largely depends on the complexity of the project.
At the end of this step, you should have a tentative plan for the sprints in which the project will be delivered.
Step #4- Plan out Your Sprints
A sprint is a period of time at the end of which a tangible part of the product is delivered to the product owner. During this stage, you finalize your sprints. You create a backlog that divides the final product into a number of deliverables, usually 4 or 5. Moreover, you plan the length of each of these sprints. As each sprint passes, a product is delivered to the owner, and an item is checked off the backlog.
Once this step is through, you simply need to identify an agile framework that suits you best, using which you will work through your backlog.
Step #5- Get the Job Done
This step ensures that your team is on the right track and everyone is working their best to get the job done. It will require you to have frequent meetings and stand-ups with your team. Standups are very important in this phase of development. These are usually 15-minute-long meetings in which you discuss the following things with your team.
1. What is the current progress?
2. What needs to be done today?
3. What problems are being faced?
Although your team may dislike these meetings and consider them annoying it is essentially through these stand-ups that the communications flow and the team stays motivated to perform.