Tiago Garcez


 Tipo: Reportes de Experiencia
 Idioma: español
 Formato: Reporte de Experiencia
 Horario: TBD
 Duración: 45′


Many Agile implementation projects in large organizations must overcome a silent (yet powerful) challenge – inertia. Despite marketing slogans promoting innovation and industry leadership, many organizations are entrenched in their way of working and therefore considerably resistant to any significant changes. When such organizations decide to implement Agile practices in their development projects, they typically use qualifiers such as “pilot” or “fine-tuning” to clarify their commitment is limited in scope and time. And more often than not, this will mean these Agile projects will have to continuously compromise with the stakeholders surrounding the development team.

While compromising is not necessarily an evil since successful implementation projects must always adapt to their environments, the issue is when these compromises impact Agile ethical principles.

This experience report uses this prism to analyze the Agile implementation project within the Belgian Post. A large organization, party state-owned and readying itself for the liberalization of the market in 2011, they have been experimenting with Agile in their development process for the last 3 years. As the Product Owner of one of the Java development teams, I experienced the effects of some of the compromises we had to do during the implementation.

As we adapted our way of working to the Post environment, certain decisions were taken that seemed justifiable at the time but resulted in compromises to some basic Agile principles such as:

- Transparency
- Human
- Incremental
- Flexible
- Anarchic

The end result is that while some improvements were done and from the outside it looks good (scrum rituals are followed), the overall results are disappointing since much more could have been achieved. We will look at the descent into this state of “Agile numbness”, where despite appearances, the project is anything but Agile.

By focusing on some of the key examples of processes and initiatives that were implemented during the last 3 years, this report will discuss acceptable compromises versus damaging ones. And also, some considerations on how to distinguish between them. This discussion will include initiatives such as:

- Sprint Checkpoint Reports
- Quality Gates
- Resource Planning
- Application ownership by business units

and highlight the impact they had in our overall Agile implementation experience.