Making Agile Work

Making Agile Work

Insights | 15 October 2012

On a traditional project, the project manager may be actively involved in directing work and telling their team what needs to be done* and work doesn’t begin until all requirements are agreed and the plan signed off. In the early stages, the Agile PM creates a high level plan, based on outline requirements and a high level view of the solution to be created. From that point onwards the end project is created iteratively and incrementally, with each increment building on the output of increments preceding it.

Within each stage of the project the team works in an iterative and incremental style in close collaboration with a representative of the business/customer in order to understand the detail of the next step and to create and validate an evolving solution.*

Agile Project Management comprises established and proven components that provide a holistic approach to the management and governance of projects. It has an overarching philosophy and guiding principles, together with a life cycle (or process) and a set of deliverables to be created and maintained as the project progresses from a controlled start through to completion. It provides clearly defined roles with specific responsibilities designed to bring together all stakeholders involved in the project.

Agile Project Management is the result of collaboration between APMG-International and The DSDM Consortium.

Benefits of Agile Project Management

Organisations seeking to adopt an Agile approach are sometimes concerned about some of the messages and myths of Agile, and it can be very difficult to separate rumour from fact. For example, some Agile approaches suggest that Project Management is irrelevant or unnecessary – a very worrying message for organisations that rely on their project managers, and organisations that may have invested heavily in creating a pool of experienced and accredited Project Managers. This has led some to an incorrect perception that Agile is only applicable for small, simple pieces of work, and that organisations would need to choose either Agile or formal project management and corporate processes. However this perception is incorrect.

One advantage of Agile Project Management for the organisation is that they can adopt an Agile approach that has a track record of successful management and delivery in the corporate environment, and an approach that complements and works with existing corporate processes, such as PRINCE2, quality and audit processes, etc. Indeed, DSDM Atern originally was designed to integrate with PRINCE2. There is no need to develop and integrate company-specific Agile management processes, the organisation can simply adopt a tried and tested approach.

Qualifications & Training

Training courses in support of APMG International’s Agile Project Management scheme are available from PM-Partners group Pty Ltd, a certified Accredited Training Organisation, approved by APMG-International.

Courses will:

  • Explain how to lay the foundations for successful agile projects
  • Explain how an agile project is managed
  • Clarify the different management styles needed for successful agile projects (compared to “traditional” projects)
  • Provide integration with PRINCE2*
  • © APM Group Ltd 2012. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of APM Group Ltd.

Implementation

Implementation of Agile however, needs to be carefully planned, is more effective when applied by experienced project managers and is not suitable for all organisations or project types.

If you would like to speak to a consultant about Agile or would like know how to assess if your organisation is ready for Agile please don’t hesitate to contact us.

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