Backlog Refinement – It’s Exploration, not Negotiation

Establishing closer relationships between the business people and developers is a central principle of agile processes. At the heart of this relationship is the Product Owner role, which carries the responsibility for establishing a bridge between both groups.

Continue reading “Backlog Refinement – It’s Exploration, not Negotiation”

Agile Errors – Sashimi and Skateboards

Forewarned is forearmed for this post, I will admit that this evening has been largely filled with music of a more psychedelic nature. You can blame Jefferson Airplane for this, but if you stick with me for the journey you will learn the connection between fish, extreme sports and technology processes with nary a reference to Douglas Adams (so long and thanks for all the fish).

Continue reading “Agile Errors – Sashimi and Skateboards”

Architecture and Agile

I’m involved in quite a few interviews as InvoiceFair grows its technical team.

Interviews are always interesting; you get a sense of what’s going on with the market, but also what people understand of the software development processes that operate within their own organisation and the subject of software development processes in general.

Continue reading “Architecture and Agile”

DevOps – How Do I Explain This to the Business?

As we’re growing our development team in InvoiceFair I’ve gone through a process of budget approval for hiring people. The process is pretty lightweight, but in an effort to be as thorough as possible, I put together an org chart, some lightweight role descriptions and so on.

To be honest it was all going well, until we got to the DevOps role…

What is this thing? What’s it going to do for us and most importantly, do we need it right now?

Hmmm. Good questions.

Continue reading “DevOps – How Do I Explain This to the Business?”

Fixed Bid Projects and Estimation – Part 2

If managed not to slumber through Part 1 on estimation, then you find yourself waiting with bated breath for the dramatic climax of our tale of estimation and fixed bid projects.

For the sake of this discussion, a fixed bid project is a project that has a fixed price based on a defined timeline. Of the fixed bid projects that I’ve seen, the timeline often has a 10%-15% leeway on the timeline. The cost almost never does – so you can be late, but you’re going to swallow the cost. Also common, just to twist the knife a little bit more, is the penalty clause. If you miss the date, not only are you going to pay for the additional time and resources, but you’re also going to have to pay the customer for the privilege.

Continue reading “Fixed Bid Projects and Estimation – Part 2”