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Agile Process Maturity

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Agile process maturity can be understood in many different ways. The most obvious measure of agile process maturity could be in terms of the degree to which the practices adhere to the Agile Manifesto and the Agile Principles[1]. In some ways this could be understood almost in terms of a "purity" measure. In order for this measure to be valid we need to operationalize these principles. So how Agile are you?

Customer Focus

Do you make satisfying the customer through early and continuous delivery of valuable software your highest priority? Does your Agile ALM process harness change for the customer's competitive advantage and welcome changing requirements, even late in development? Your delivery cycle should favor shorter iterations, with delivering working software frequently, from a couple of weeks to a couple of months. Developers and business people should be working together daily throughout the project. Projects are built around motivated individuals and they are provided the environment and support they need and trusted to get the job done. Information is best conveyed face-to-face and working software is the primary measure of progress.

The Agile ALM should help all of the stakeholders to maintain a constant pace indefinitely in what is known as sustainable development.QuotationThe Agile ALM should help all of the stakeholders to maintain a constant pace indefinitely in what is known as sustainable development.Quotation
There is also continuous attention to technical excellence and good design, including a focus on simplicity - the art of maximizing the amount of work not done. Self-organizing teams produce the best architectures, requirements, and designs. At regular intervals, the team reflects on how to become more effective, then tunes and adjusts its behavior accordingly. These principles have formed the basis of Agile development for many years now. In order to understand them, you need to consider how to operationalize and implement these principles in practice. Then we will see how they fit into and, of course, facilitate the Agile ALM.

Applying the Principles

Implementing the Agile ALM requires that you understand the Agile values and principles and, more importantly, understand how to utilize them in practical terms. Technology projects require a deep understanding of exactly what the system should do and also how it should work. These are important details that are typically expressed in terms of requirements. There are many different types of requirements from system level response time to functional usage including navigation. Many professionals use Epics[2] and Stories[3] to describe requirements in high-level terms. Writing and maintaining requirements document is often less than fruitful with most requirements document out of date even before they have been approved by the user. Agile takes a pragmatic approach to requirements management that focuses on working software instead of writing requirements documents that are often of limited value.

One very effective way to manage requirements is to supplement them with well written test cases and test scripts. Test cases often contain exactly the same information that you might expect in a requirements document.

Recognition by the Agile Community

Another indication of agile process maturity would be acceptance by the agile community and that can be quite a challenge to achieve.

I will be writing more about Agile process maturity in the near future, but I would like to get your input too. How would you define and measure Agile process maturity?


[1] http://agilemanifesto.org/principles.html


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Micro Focus Completes Acquisition of Serena Software, Inc. Application Lifecycle Management Acquisition Boosts Micro Focus’s DevOps Capability ROCKVILLE, Md., May 2, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Micro Focus (LSE: MCRO.L) today announced the completion of its acquisition of Serena Software, a leading provider of Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) software, under the terms of the definitive agreement disclosed on March 22, 2016. "Our customers continue to look at DevOps as a way to deploy critical applications and services quickly and with greater reliability to meet business demands," said Stephen Murdoch, CEO, Micro Focus. "The Serena acquisition extends our ability to help customers meet these challenges so they can drive greater innovation faster with lower risk." According to industry analyst firm Gartner, "DevOps implementations utilize technology, especially automation tools, that can leverage an increasingly programmable and dynamic infrastructure from a life cycle perspective."1  The experience and expertise which the Serena business brings will enable Micro Focus to help its customers develop and release applications and services faster, with greater speed and accuracy. Serena adds capabilities in software application development; software configuration and change management; and business process management to Micro Focus's portfolio of ALM solutions spanning mainframe environments, distributed systems and cloud. The combination of Micro Focus and Serena allows companies to better: Design and build business applications and services with greater accuracy, reliability and predictability; Continuously deploy existing core business applications on a wider variety of platforms to meet changing business needs; and Improve the speed and efficiency of new business services through automated release and deployment solutions. About Serena Software Serena is among the largest Application Lifecycle Management vendors with more than 2,500 enterprise customers. Serena helps the highly regulated large enterprise move fast without breaking things – increasing velocity of the software development lifecycle while enhancing security, compliance, and performance. More information is available at www.serena.com. About Micro Focus Micro Focus (LSE: MCRO.L) is a global enterprise software company helping customers innovate faster with lower risk. Our software helps customers build, operate and secure IT systems that bring together existing business logic and applications with emerging technologies to meet increasingly complex business demands. For more information, visit: www.microfocus.com. 1I&O Must Combine ITIL and DevOps to Deliver Business Value for Bimodal IT," by George Spafford and Ian Head, March 18, 2016.
Hi, I am excited to invite you to subscribe to our new online publication which provides guidance on Configuration Management Best Practices, Agile Application Lifecycle Management (including videos) and, of course DevOps. Our publication explains hands-on best practices required to implement just enough process to ensure that you can build software and systems that are reliable and secure. Based upon our new book, Agile Application Lifecycle Management - Using DevOps to Drive Process Improvement, the Agile ALM DevOps Journal seeks to promote a dialogue that is really needed in the industry today. We will discuss practical approaches to implementing the Agile ALM using DevOps best practices including continuous integration, delivery and deployment. We will also discuss process improvement strategies that work in large organizations that must comply with federal regulatory guidelines, along with smaller teams that may very well grow as they become successful. We are taking this journey together and our goal is to ensure that you have a voice and can share your experiences along with learning from other colleagues too. Enjoy Leslie Sachs's amazing column: Personality Matters and Bob Aiello's column: Behaviorally Speaking. We will also report on major incidents where organizations clearly need to improve on their ability to develop and deliver software effectively, including the recent Southwest systems glitches which resulted in thousands of flights being cancelled and thousands more being delayed. We will also bring you exciting technical product announcements such as jfrog's new xray, which helps to scan your runtime objects, including docker images, for vulnerabilities. This is an exciting time to be in the technology field. Join the revolution! You can submit your articles for publication to share your own knowledge and experience!  Subscribe to receive your copy and register so that you can comment online Bob Aiello http://www.linkedin.com/in/BobAiello @bobaiello, @agilealmdevops, @cmbestpractices This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  
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