Monday, January 30, 2006

Where do I start with Agile?

So you want to bring Agile into your software development process. And you are wondering where to start. That’s a tough question for each team does different things well. I always like to start anything new with teams by getting a baseline, that way we can show improvement and we can celebrate. We can also more easily identify the low hanging fruit.  Just the process of getting the baseline creates some interesting dialogue amongst the team. Anyhow, I like to keep it simple, so I took the 27 rules and practices of extreme programming, put them in a spreadsheet and made a wag of the percentage of time I actually saw the rule or practice being implemented. For one of the companies I worked with they implemented three of the rules and practices over 90% of the time. These three were; they measured project velocity (in their own way, but they measured it), their unit testing was awesome and they had really good collective code ownership. The other rules and practices implementation varied from less than 90% all the way to non-existent. That’s ok, gives room for improvement