Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Bringing Agile into SharePoint - Benefits

Learn early
Doing sprints help the team identify issues early at the project life cycle. This helps the team find things that are good or bad for the team or process early in the development stage rather than waiting till the end of the project to get feedback. This way the teams Learn early from the mistakes and can better themselves in the upcoming sprints.

Potentially shippable software at the end of every sprint.
The intention of every sprint is a potentially shippable software that is of immediate use to the user. By delivering a product that can be used and tested will also help the team receive early feedback on the work done. The team can then make changes to the product based on these feedback which will eventually result in a more value delivered to the end users.
This will also help the team perceive shippable obstacles and issues early in the development state compared to the waterfall model where issues related to release of software is often identified at the end.

Kaizen mindset
The scrum artifacts like daily standups, sprint reviews, retrospections help the team to focus on continuous improvement through inspect and adapt. The team manges to improve by identifying and managing the impediments during the process.

Better visibility and improved productivity
The team focuses on keeping the progress of the project visible to the entire world. Everything the team is busy with is displayed on the tailboard. The task board shows the progress of the stories or tasks, spikes, bugs and the status of each item.
Burn down charts facilitate as symptom checkers for the team and help them to identify the smells during the progress of the sprint. For e.g a flat burndown shows that either the team is working on a lot of stories at time or nothing is getting done completely  in the sprint.
The velocity charts helps business envision and evaluate the productivity of the team after every sprint.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Bringing Agile into SharePoint - The combination

SharePoint offers several flexible approaches that enable rapid development and deployment of business processes through its out-of-the-box features which are also easily customizable. A SharePoint developer can leverage a lot of this out of box functionality and combine it with .NET skills to create highly functional business solutions quickly, easily and at a fraction of the cost of traditional solutions.

A combination of SharePoint and Agile can be used to deliver good solution to the customers with improved speed up overall delivery time with better focus on developer productivity.

So what are the benefits that SharePoint lends to Agile?

A lot of out of the box functionality:
Most of the client requirements map directly onto features provided from a default provision of SharePoint. With a wide choice of from web templates to workflows most of the features SharePoint has supports the vision for the customers’ requirements.

Rapid prototyping:
SharePoint comes with an abundance of features and tools that help developers quickly build business solutions even if they don’t have a strong background in web development. You can easily build, customize and deploy solutions using SharePoint. It’s very simple to create a rough working model of what the customer is looking for that helps the team to ensure that they can deliver what the customer really wants using SharePoint.

Easy customization:
With SharePoint, you have an option of OOTB features with which the development team has the ability to build custom applications and components with ease. Along with the help of proper tooling the administrators can customize the entire SharePoint experience with your his/ her organizations branding.

Easy deployment and administration:
Administrators can easily access and manage features, system settings, monitor farms, perform backup and restore content, security through the Central Administration Console all in a single location.

I'll write more on the combination of Agile and SharePoint in the upcoming posts and we'll also see how to address some of the challenges of Agile development practices in SharePoint like unit testing, TDD etc.