Agile Coaching – Agile Requirements

PM Case Studies

Agile Requirements Phase

Our customer, a German Car manufacturer, had made a commitment to run 80% of their internal projects using some form of Agile. The project we were invited to support was a much needed update to their Dealership Management System. These rather complex systems address the needs of the finance, sales, parts, inventory and administration components of running the dealership. We joined the project in the requirements phase – the project team were summarizing the functionality of the existing system and comparing that with the functionality available in the new system. Once all the legacy functions were covered, new features and functions could be gradually introduced. The big challenge here was that none of the IT team or the impacted business side team had any experience with Agile.

Solution:

  • Training: We developed a 2 day workshop to introduce the basics of agile and show how requirements are handled differently on an agile project.
  • Coaching: We coached the team over a three month period, guiding them through the agile requirements management process. At the same time we gradually introduced agile concepts like: Release planning, Sprint Planning, Sprint Reviews, Retrospectives, Daily Stand-ups and so on. We made an effort not to overload the team with too many rules; we simply focused on the things that would quickly produce results in terms of better project outcomes.

Results:

In the end all of the requirements were recorded in the product backlog as right-sized User Stories, and prioritized by value and technical difficulty. This made it easy for the software vendor to kick -off the development phase of the project with confidence that they would be delivering high value features to the customer first.

The IT and Business Teams were please with the light touch we used and the fact that we stuck to practicalities, rather than getting bogged down in theoretical concepts.

 

This post is also available in: Japanese