SigmaWay Blog

SigmaWay Blog tries to aggregate original and third party content for the site users. It caters to articles on Process Improvement, Lean Six Sigma, Analytics, Market Intelligence, Training ,IT Services and industries which SigmaWay caters to

When scrum goes old

When scrum is new, everybody seems to enjoy it but after repeated routine of sprints, planning, and daily reviews it becomes in interesting and old. There are some early signs or indicators which can prevent this kind of situation:

1.       Repeated

2.       Unresolved issues in retrospectives

3.       Stories are not demonstrable;

4.       Unfinished stories are split and carried over the next sprint

5.       During sprint planning, tasks are assigned to team members

6.       Team members are not 100% on the project or are withdrawn from the project.

Read the complete article here: https://www.scrumalliance.org/community/articles/2016/may/when-scrum-becomes-stale-the-team-under-performs

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Top 3 takeaways from scrum

Scum experts who have been working on scrum for a long time have found out where the true power of scrum lies. It lies in these 3 main things: Transparency: Scum enables the every team member to be involved in the project from starting, unlike other design models like a waterfall. This helps to keep the development of process and product transparent; Self- organization: Self organizing teams fives freedom and power to innovate; Trust: It is the most important and crucial factor. Trust between teammates that they are loyal to the product. Read the complete article here: https://www.scrumalliance.org/community/articles/2016/may/the-power-of-scrum

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Contracts in a scrum team

Many developers think that contracts are the concerns of only sales people and executives. But this is not the case.  Even a scrum team works under contracts. Contracts like DoR( Definition of Ready) and DoD (Definition of done) are the two contracts which every scrum team must have. DoR is an agreement between product owner and scrum team. DoD is a contract where the team must meet their requirements. It is also signed between PO and scrum team.  There can be many other contracts like Interteam contracts and organizational contracts. Read the complete article here: https://www.scrumalliance.org/community/articles/2016/may/contract-negotiations-in-a-scrum-team

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Shift Left: The Right Key to Agile DevOps

Shift left is the practice of improving quality at an earlier stage (day to day basis) by identifying the defects and fixing them whenever they arise. It helps in running the application and system 25% faster, it also improves customer satisfaction with lower labor cost and higher production. Beginning quality assurance activities at earlier stage ensures improved estimation and planning, a proper test data and technical environment, test case properly design, test automation assets in place. It also has efficiency advantages. Business benefits by shift left are: lower cost, quicker deployment and delivery for the businesses, higher business process quality and glitches free execution, and the most important satisfies business partners. Teams that use it, step up their project planning and execution capabilities. To know more, read the article by Mark Summers at www.cio.com

link: http://www.cio.com/article/3050579/leadership-management/want-agile-devops-shift-left.html


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Everyone trying to “scale agile” or “be agile at scale” is attempting to address these scale areas

Everyone is having the understanding with how to “do agile” or “be agile,” individually or as a team. Regardless of whether people are doing and being agile correctly and successfully, everyone is now busy either scaling agile or being agile at scale. But the questions are. Why? What are the main reasons for all agile conferences these days to have scaling sessions on their programs? Why are many new agile books not about individual teams anymore? Which market needs have been identified by the global explosion of scaling programs, consultants, coaches, certificates, frameworks and seminars? That is what found is: 1) Growth. 2) Coordination. 3) Orchestration. 4) Legacy 5) Complexity. To read more about it follow the article written by Jurgen Appelo (Pioneering management in creative organization)at: http://www.forbes.com/sites/jurgenappelo/2016/02/24/the-five-areas-of-scaling-agile/#7dc2fbcc2efd


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Ball runner: learning Agile through game

This game ball runner originated in London in September 2016. So what is it? It is a game where an individual is bombarded with balls and he/ she has to figure out what to do with them simultaneously. Some key takeaways from the game are: continuous improvement; self-organizing teams; challenge processes; theory of constraints; limiting WIP; Push vs. pull; Kanban. The game has a maximum of 20 players and minimum of 4. Read complete details here: https://www.scrumalliance.org/community/articles/2016/may/ball-runner-an-agile-game

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How to conduct daily scrums with distributed teams

Conducting daily scrum meetings is so easy when people are physically present at the location of scrum meeting. But what happens when the people are at a different geographical location and time zones. Here are some hacks to ease out the situation:

·         Choose the most possible convenient time zone for all teams.

·          Identify and attack blockers between scrums.

·          Use Agile planning tool to keep the team on the same page.

·          Mute telephones while another distributed team member is updating their status.

·          Take daily Scrum notes; Use chat tools to overcome the barrier of different language.

 Read the full article here: https://www.scrumalliance.org/community/articles/2016/march/effective-ways-of-conducting-daily-standup-meeting

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Agile transformation doesn’t happen overnight

One of the most emerging trends in IT companies is the shift from traditional waterfall to Agile. Agile is dynamic and provides better results, but it does possess some limitations and challenges. Many organizations work on legacy systems where there are a lot of dependent systems that are operating under waterfall model. There is a need to find a way to support the client's demands for a major marketing push and enhancements within the given limitations. Read the complete article here: https://www.scrumalliance.org/community/articles/2016/march/rome-wasnt-built-in-a-day

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Is Agile development a change in management?

According to Environmental Protection Agency CTO Greg Godbout, Agile development is not only about completing projects efficiently and cost effectively, but it's about urging the government to take new initiatives in planning and acquisition. He also said that it's all about the ability to learn more flexible ways to handle change in technology. It can be noted that managers resist change because they think it means to them that they have been doing it wrong. The push for agile is often met with resistance, but management eventually comes around. Read the full article here: https://fcw.com/articles/2016/03/02/agile-management-rockwell.aspx

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All About Agile Marketing

To be ready for the next big trend or story, it is essential to build your personal brand online. To stay on track, good research and analytics is very important. If you are thinking of what's being shared on social media, there are many ways how your brand can take advantage of agile marketing. It can help in staying ahead of what is to come and be prepared for news and events. Today one needs to be active on social media and track content and trends. It is essential to build an audience. Knowing the needs of the audience is a good way to start along with a flexible marketing plan. There are some steps that can increase brand awareness. They are: - # Track the latest hashtags # Conduct thorough research # Be ready for change. As you involve agile marketing as a regular part of your personal branding strategy, it's good to remember that this is a process which involves careful attention and planning. To read more about agile marketing follow : http://www.business2community.com/branding/use-agile-marketing-bring-visibility-brand-01461244



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How Important Is Agile Certification?

Agile is becoming important in the IT field. But, what is the importance of agile certification? Adding a certification to your resume has been always appreciable. But the industry looks for candidates who can really apply agile. A certification implies that the candidate has some experience in this field. Moreover, it is easier to work with the team with an Agile professional, because team members will pay more heed to an expert. Read more about it in the article written by Sharon Florentine (writer at CIO.com) at:  http://www.cio.com/article/3033058/careers-staffing/do-agile-certifications-mean-anything.html



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What speed is required for agile sprint to run smoothly?

There is a significant shift that has happened in companies from waterfall methodology to agile methodology. Story cards are developed and bundled in milestones. Milestones are great in measuring the progress and determining the scope of the project. Milestones need not to be always set in a fixed time manner like monthly or quarterly. Often gaps are created in milestones to do other projects. A rhythm that can be set up for every Monday is a good option because it will help in getting small incremental changes that will help implementation team. But some point of time weekly cycle appears to be very fast. It is very necessary to determine that what is really feasible to achieve for the team. Read the full article here: http://it.toolbox.com/blogs/original-thinking/how-fast-does-your-agile-sprint-71351

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Is Agile for u?

Yes! Agile is for everyone, not just for IT industry, though it has become a misconception because it is majorly implemented in IT world only. Let's just understand what is agile. Agile is a framework which helps in problem solving with use of teamwork, with main focus and priority for delivery and a constant effort on finding ways to improve the quality of work and the product.  So this can apply whether you are building software, a toothpaste, a dam, or managing a restaurant. There are some things which surely must be kept in mind while considering a shift to agile. Like, what am I really trying to build or achieve? How do I create a creative environment where the right people on the team? How to keep focused on the agenda? How do I measure progress? How to increase feedback and learning cycle? If you can answer these questions considering your business, then, welcome to the agile world! Read more at - https://adtmag.com/articles/2015/07/06/does-agile-apply-to-you.aspx


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Charges for Changes

Agile teams must embrace change. After all, that is what agile means, right? Accommodating changing customer's requirement… But the stakeholders or customers must also understand that nothing comes for free in the world. So are changes. They have a cost related to them. Scrum works on a rule that once the required changes are fully stated, a sprint begins. And no changes are allowed into a sprint. Once a sprint is started, it’s not disturbed and the team’s entire focus is on selected work. This is good and works efficiently, but can sometimes backfire. The customer can question that the foundation of being agile is to welcome changing requirements. Well, yes, but they aren’t free. Customers must understand that changes introduced beyond a certain point have a cost related to them. And both the customers and organization should work together to optimize results with the minimum cost.To know more, read the article by Mike Cohn (founder of Mountain Goat Software), at: https://www.mountaingoatsoftware.com/blog/change-isnt-free


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Agile Service Oriented WEM

The world of Web Experience Management has come a long way. Starting from traditional, brochure-ware, static web content management to a now more efficient – agile service - oriented web experience management platform. With the help of this platform, we can get the following benefits:

  • Ability to mix content management with line-of-business applications and existing customer data
  • Be prepared for all the changes occurring in this dynamic world

To avail these benefits and while considering an agile or content-services approach, firms look for the following capabilities:

  • Decoupled Architecture
  • Agile Deployment Model
  • External Preview
  • Structured Content
  • NoSQL Database

To know more, please read the following article by David Hillis, VP, Business Development, Ingeniux at cmswire.com:


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Importance of Agile and innovations in Manufacturing Companies

According to Bill Baker (President/Owner, Speed to Excellence), manufacturing companies need to be innovative.  They need to keep on finding new ways to do a task. Companies and individuals need to be agile and flexible in gaining new skills. In manufacturing industry only three things matter. They are:

People: Employees are the most valuable assets of the organizations. They can find innovative ways to make processes more efficient.
Technology: It keeps on changing. To be competitive you need to adapt new technologies.
Process: Process can be improved by reducing waste time and by improving quality and to improve process you can use lean six sigma.
Read more at: http://www.industryweek.com/leadership/what-does-future-hold-manufacturing

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The challenges for project managers to overcome when going Agile

How good is methodology when it comes to innovation? One key reason for going Agile is that it enables people to be creative and come up with ideas. With Agile, people are given freedom - but they need to understand what to do with it, as well as what they are expected to produce with it. There are certain challenges that makes Agile difficult to implement in the beginning but it will bring productivity in the long run. To know more about the challenges met, follow the article by Rebecca Leitch, writer in ESI International.


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