Troubleshooting Agile

By Zach Chapman - July 30, 2019

Troubleshooting Agile
July 30, 2019 By Zach Chapman
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Troubleshooting Agile

Have you gone through an Agile implementation only to find a lack of success and progress? Not every Agile implementation goes smoothly. Many companies and individual development teams will have hiccups along the way. You can hire the best Agile coaches in the world but it may still require tweaking before you get it perfect for your organization. When you run into issues, how do you troubleshoot? How can you pinpoint the root cause of your issues to correct it going forward?

Find the "Slowdown" Factors

To improve Agile for your organization, you need to figure out what is slowing your team down. The goal of Agile is to help deliver quality software in an iterative fashion, quickly. It is all about putting value in the hands of your customers and stakeholders early and often.

Impediments, when not taken care of, serve as tremendous obstacles to the growth of development teams. One common obstacle development teams face is difficulty getting cooperation from downstream or upstream dependencies. Another issue might be a lack of proper development tools, as well as technical deficiencies. Slowdowns can happen when individual team members are not pulling their weight for the development team. Managers can also put unnecessary pressure on teams to deliver by certain dates and milestones when it does not mesh with the Agile mindset.  

Taking care of impediments as soon as they arise can clear the obstacles and allow for more successful Agile growth.

Where Do Metrics Fit in?

Where do metrics fit in when it comes to Agile? Are you able to measure your progress in a meaningful way? Are you deriving value from the reporting you create? Many organizations suffer as they try to create metrics to measure productivity and progress. Fortunately, Agile makes tracking your team’s progress a lot easier.

In the Agile space, only two types of metrics really matter: delivery metrics and value metrics. Delivery metrics focus on items such as velocity, defect count and automated test code coverage. Value metrics, on the other hand, focus on things like customer satisfaction and user adoption of software.  

These are metrics that add value to the organization and help the development team progress forward. Creation of metrics that lack value slows down Agile maturity and gains.

Focus on Continuous Improvement

troubleshooting agile

Your approach to Agile today will change in a few months because teams will be forced to adapt their style of work to match frequent shifts in technological trends. One thing that shouldn’t change is your support for team members taking advantage of any and all continuous improvement opportunities. Free up time for them to attend training seminars so that they can learn things to bring back to the organization.

Professional development of individuals within each development team helps the whole team improve. Learning the basics of Scrum can help immensely.  Use books, attend conferences and check out courses, all in the spirit of improving Agile maturity within the organization.

Every organization can do a lot to improve its standing with Agile. If you are experiencing issues with Agile adoption in your organization, find the root cause. It may be specific impediments or a lack of professional development in the team members. It could also be due to waste-creating metrics and reports that lack value. Drive each development team to grow, to find their way in the Agile space, and the gains will come faster than you expect.

At ClearlyAgile we offer a variety of training and certification programs, including

  • Certified Scrum Master

  • Certified Scrum Developer

  • Kanban Fundamentals

  • DevOps Fundamentals

Our Agile coaches make the training classes fun, interactive and hands-on in a way that keeps students engaged.