Improved software quality, accelerated time-to-market, and reduced delivery costs.
Software delivery teams are continually struggling to achieve these three things. In order for teams to keep pace with an ever-changing environment, Agile Scrum, or the equivalent framework (henceforth referred to as Agile) is the best way to respond quickly and with minimum risks and costs.
Agile enables teams to focus on development and improve the interactions they have with one another. Over 71% of organizations adopting Agile to manage changing priorities. It is a great way to deliver the software iteratively and incrementally, quicken the feedback process, and ensure alignment with customer or user needs.
Why post-it notes are not enough!
When I began my professional career, it was at a time when Agile project planning and tracking was done on boards using post-it notes to represent tasks. Teams came together, and each person got a chance to stick a post-it note to the wall. Back then, it made for a great group activity, but when it came to tracking sprints across the project lifecycle, the process was somewhat ineffective.
Fast forward to today, and now I help companies adopt modern Agile tools like Jira Software. Although the old post-it note method was good enough back then and is still being followed by many, there are many situations when companies must adopt robust tools like Jira to reap the maximum benefit from Agile:
- Enabling scale: With the popularity of modern software products increasing, it is crucial to ensure scalability to cater to the increased demand. With tools like Jira, you can scale your Agile project across the organization, while dramatically increasing productivity and quality, and accelerating time-to-market. Jira lets you add new users to the project directly while allowing you to manage new project roles with ease. You can respond effectively to dynamic market conditions, fluctuating customer needs, and evolving technologies.
- Artifacts are essential for organizations: Post-it notes are usually thrown away once a task is complete. Post-it notes provide no way for teams to determine when a sprint was finished, when it was deployed, what challenges were faced etc. If you want to track a project across its lifecycle, and if artifacts are essential for your organization in the long-term, you will need a tool like Jira to build project roadmaps, track project progress, and achieve end-to-end traceability across project deliverables. Companies can also consider using AI/ML solutions to leverage historical data.
- When the projects are complex: Modern software delivery projects have become increasingly complex. The only way you can manage such large and complex projects is by using a tool that allows you to break down tasks into smaller, more manageable chunks. For example, with JIRA’s epics, themes, and user stories, you can efficiently structure your work. You can get visibility into your biggest priorities while also paying just as much attention to the minute details. Jira helps you stick to your plan or change the plan while responding to change and reporting on progress.
- When there are large teams: Post-it notes are great for small teams in the same location. However, for bigger teams (recommendation of scrum might be eight, but for practical reasons, it could be more), imagine the number of notes that get posted after each meeting! For large teams, Scrum or Kanban boards are a great way to collaborate on tasks and track the progress of the project as it moves through each phase of the lifecycle.
- When the teams are not at the same location: Post-it note walls made more sense when the entire development team was working from a single site. Today’s teams are global and geographically dispersed. What teams need today is a robust project management tool that makes it easy for isolated members to contribute efficiently to the project and its success. Using Jira, teams can capture, assign, and set priorities and manage the whole process of delivery using a single pane.
- When teams want to leverage automation: For teams looking to speed up software delivery and improve time to market, automation is a great option. With Jira, you can automate and extend your project without having to write or manage complex scripts. The array of automation rules is usually easy to configure, allowing anyone and everyone to automate manual, repetitive tasks, and improve the outcomes from Agile, quickly and easily.
- Integrations to the other tools: In the software delivery value chain, teams end up using an eclectic set of Agile tools for time tracking, defect management, project status, design, coding, testing, and more. However, poor integration between these tools can create a lot of problems in the delivery process. When these tools cannot integrate or share information, the impact on the progress and quality of your development will be massive. Tools like Jira support integration with a host of other tools, including Confluence, Bitbucket/GitHub, Bamboo, Slack, and more, allowing you to retrieve the critical information you need and drive productivity.
In the world of software delivery teams,Jira needs no introduction. Over the years, Jira has come a long way. From being a simple defect management tool, today, it is now one of the best project management tools on the horizon.
Using Jira, software teams can develop project roadmaps, tailor workflows, track progress, prioritize activities, and achieve full traceability across project deliverables.
- Since Jira collects and collates project data in a single, searchable hub, it is highly intuitive and easy to use. Jira provides easy access to information, allowing team members to perform all sorts of analysis and valuable reports on their progress.
- Because Jira allows teams to add tasks on a board, they can collaboratively work on projects, get insights into individual contributions, solve issues together, and easily track changes and history.
- All team members have information on when a task will begin and when it will end; hence, Jira offers excellent transparency and visibility into a project's progress.
- As the tool provides information on time spent on a particular task from beginning to end, it enables the teams to think of ways and methods to overcome roadblocks and improve efficiency for better effectiveness and efficiency.
- Since every member can see the next task that has to be taken up and attaches necessary documents onto a single, commonly used system, it enhances collaboration and knowledge sharing, allowing everyone in the team to work towards a common goal.
- The real-time reports that get generated on project status, time taken, challenges, issues, and more provide teams with a single source of truth. Teams can then look at ways to overcome the challenges and improve the efficiency of delivery.
Modern software delivery teams have a lot on their plate: planning for a project, designing a roadmap, allocating roles and responsibilities, tracking project processes, and resolving issues, among others.
If we have to pick only one tool that makes the software delivery process easy, it isJira. While there are many other tools like Jira my favorite is Jira. It empowers delivery teams to simplify the software delivery process while allowing teams to focus on collaboration to drive visibility and efficiency. With Jira, you can boost team efficiency, effectiveness, increase the quality of your deliverables, and ensure customer satisfaction through rapid, continuous delivery of working software.