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Collaborating & Communicating Agile Requirements - Online

Course Code: STTA AGILEREQ
Length: 3 Days
Tuition: $1,495.00
Official

Schedule for this Course

There are no dates scheduled for this course.
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Course Description:

PMI: 14 PDUs
NASBA: 12 CPEs
IIBA: 14 CDUs

Eliciting Effective Requirements for Your Agile Project!

In just two days, learn how to:

  • Master writing user stories
  • Appreciate how best known methods in traditional requirements processes can apply to Agile methods
  • Communicate requirements using agile techniques to bridge the customers' and developers' needs.
  • Identify stakeholders and user roles to ensure that all requirement viewpoints are elicited
  • Create and maintain a product backlog
  • Prioritize requirements so that the most important customer needs are delivered first
  • Formulate an iterative project plan with feedback cycles that keep the project on track
  • Estimate business value for requirements to track how a project contributes to the enterprise
  • Develop requirements in an iterative approach to capture the details at the appropriate time

Gathering Requirements for an Agile Project

Project failures are often due to poor requirements gathering, analysis and planning. Traditional requirements documents may not contain complete and accurate requirements due to rapidly changing business environments.Agile requirements gathering, by moving detailed requirements closer to implementation, allows for rapid response to change. "Collaborating & Communicating Agile Requirements" will show you how to gather and manage these requirements.

Organizing and Managing Requirements

Traditional requirements are documented in a requirements specification. Changes to the requirements are managed through a change process. This course will demonstrate alternative ways of documenting requirements and managing changes. These alternatives can allow for a less "heavy" process in projects that can benefit from quick changes in direction.

Discover Real-World Techniques

This two-day course will give you hands-on experience with techniques for gathering agile requirements. Explanatory lectures with demonstrations, combined with practice exercises will provide you with the experience needed to create requirements that meet business needs.

In-Class Group Exercises:

In-class exercises help you identify and examine firsthand problems that you may experience. With our demonstrations and case studies, you will discuss ways you can handle problems up front and how you can make improvements, throughout the phases of requirements development.

  • Establish a project charter, define roles for the project team and determine appropriate communication
  • Define customer roles and personas
  • Document requirements with user stories
  • Create and maintain a product backlog
  • Determine customer value and priority for each user story
  • Participate in engaging and innovative estimating techniques
  • Communicate a release plan for a product
  • Document requirement details with use cases
  • Plan and execute an iteration cycle
  • Learn how to continuously improve requirements collaboration

20 Immediate Benefits of Participating in this Workshop

  1. Learn how to adapt quickly and positively to rapidly changing business needs and priorities
  2. Learn how to collaborate on requirements for a project
  3. Learn how customer satisfaction increases with more frequent customer-developer feedback
  4. Align development to business needs to provide business value quickly
  5. Learn the benefits of using Agile methods to communicate requirements
  6. Understand the five levels of planning in Agile
  7. Use agile requirements as an effective basis for planning and testing
  8. Learn more effective methods for accurate estimating while elaborating requirements
  9. Understand the characteristics of a well-written agile requirement
  10. Understand how to plan frequent releases so that customers can recognize benefit quickly
  11. Minimize risks of ineffective solutions by obtaining frequent feedback
  12. Shorten project schedules by prioritizing requirements to get the most important needs met first
  13. Keep business requirements focused on the customer
  14. Model user roles to capture the needs of specific users
  15. Identify gaps not usually found or corrected in requirements gathering
  16. Reduce requirements inventory in process
  17. Define the right requirements at the right time
  18. Know what to do when new technologies render features of your project obsolete
  19. Learn how to determine an iteration plan
  20. Get earlier validation of requirements against a working system to keep a project moving in the right direction

Prerequisites

n/a

Course Outline:

Section I: Agile Overview
More than simply a methodology or approach to software development, Agile embraces a set of principles that drive more effective software development. Agile focuses on the customer, embraces the ever changing nature of business environments and encourages human interaction in delivering outstanding software. In this introduction, we'll discuss the following:

  • Agile Manifesto
  • Agile Principles
  • Agile Methodologies
  • Agile Benefits

Section II. Project Initiation
Among the key contributing factors leading to project failure is poor communication between the customer and developer groups. It is critical, therefore, that each successful project start out right. In this section we'll cover the following topics:

  • Project Charter
  • Project Roles
  • Project Planning
  • Communication

Class Exercise
Working in small teams, you will establish a project charter including goals and objectives for a sample project. You will participate in defining key roles for project team members and set clear expectations for project communication.

Section III: Focus on the Customer
It is critical that the customer be the focus of a product throughout the development lifecycle. Every requirement should bring some value to the customer. Therefore, prior to defining requirements, it is important to define the customer. This will include the following topics:

  • Customer Involvement
  • Customer Roles
  • Creating and Using Personas
  • Constraints

Class Exercise
Within your teams you will brainstorm some customer roles for your example project. From the brainstorming, you will consolidate the larger list of roles into key roles that will be the focus of your sample project. For each of the key roles, each team will create personas and share them with the class.

Section IV: User Stories
User stories are a way to capture requirements from a customer point of view. Stories do not capture all of the detailed requirements, but require enough information to estimate and plan. A proven tool used in Agile teams to capture initial requirements, in this section we will explore the following topics:

  • User Stories
  • Goals and Objectives
  • Acceptance Criteria and Acceptance Tests
  • Non-user Stories

Class Exercise
Led by the instructor, the class will come up with some user stories for a sample project. We will discuss how to determine as a team what is appropriate for your user stories to be effective.

Section V: Product Backlog
The Product Backlog is the complete list of desired elements, or requirements, for the product. It is NOT a Requirements Specification, but a high level identification of what the software may satisfy. In this section we will discuss effective means of creating, prioritizing and maintaining the Product Backlog. We will peruse the following topics:

  • Who owns the Product Backlog?
  • Functional and Non-functional Requirements
  • Story-Writing Workshop
  • Prioritizing the Product Backlog
  • Maintaining the Product Backlog
  • Techniques for further elaboration

Class Exercise
In small teams identified previously, you will engage in a story-writing workshop as a means of building a product backlog for your sample project. Subsequently, you will participate in prioritizing your product backlog and present the highest priority stories to the class.

Section VI: Estimating and Planning
Among the greatest challenges in developing software and delivering against stakeholder expectations is estimating accurately and subsequently planning how those expectations can be met. Agile cannot make that challenge disappear, but offers some very helpful tools that enable teams to set and meet the appropriate expectations.

  • Relative vs. Actual Estimating
  • Using Story Points
  • Planning Poker (Grenning 2002)
  • Five Levels of Planning in Agile
  • Estimating Team Velocity

Class Exercise
Using the estimating techniques taught using story points, you'll enjoy a few rounds of Planning Poker with your team to establish estimates for your highest priority stories. This fun and highly effective method of relative estimating is certain to be a valuable tool for you to incorporate into your own estimating process.

Section VII: Release Plan
The release plan identifies a goal for the stories that will be included for a release of the software. Through the prior processes, the team will have prioritized the stories and estimated the team velocity. These key elements will come together to give the team a level of confidence that they can deliver the necessary requirements for a product release in what is normally a fixed timeframe. We'll examine the following topics:

  • Iteration Estimates
  • Prioritization Revisited
  • Ownership and Participation
  • Communication

Class Exercise
Each team will establish a release plan for their sample project incorporating priority, estimates and velocity as appropriate. We'll discuss how real experiences of fixed time and requirement projects working well with an Agile release plan.

Section VIII: Use Cases
At the appropriate time, prior to entering into the development of a story, requirements will need to be discussed in more detail. Use cases are a proven method for documenting the appropriate detail from a user interaction point of view. In this section, the instructor will introduce use cases and discuss some of the foundational elements that support the development process.

  • Use Case Advantages
  • Use Case elements
  • Success Path
  • Alternate Paths
  • Exceptions

Class Exercise
Teams will discuss and document use cases, including alternate paths and exceptions, for some of their high priority stories. As a class we'll discuss the relationship between use cases and stories, and how they complement each other.

Section IX: Iteration Plan and Execution
An iteration is a fixed amount of time in which stories/requirements will be developed, tested and ready for release. Because the requirements communication process takes you into each iteration throughout the product release, we'll explore the iteration planning and execution process. During this section we will discuss the following topics:

  • Iteration Planning
  • Defining "Done"
  • Test-Driven, Test Often
  • Demonstrate Working Software (Delivered Requirements)
  • Inspect and Adapt applied to Requirements
  • Finding your rhythm

Section X: Retrospective on Communicating Requirements
Using Agile Methods – Retrospectives are a key practice in Agile. We will take an opportunity to review our learning collectively and how we can improve. Each participant will identify one or two things that they will adapt in their working environment based on their learning. The instructor will also identify any elements of the course that should be adapted for a better learning experience, thus benefiting future course participants.

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