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Scaling Agile with Danube ScrumWorks 4

08.04.2009
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As the agile tools market continues to mature, more organizations are beginning to scale their development processes in ways that were previously not possible.  Danube Technologies this week unveiled the latest version of its Scrum lifecycle management software, providing large organizations with a flexible system to model project features and milestones across multiple development groups.   

ScrumWorks 4 Pro adds new program and project management features that allows Scrum organizations to better prioritize tasks across large, often cross-departmental teams. 

Scrum has often been relegated to the realm of 'small' development teams of between 7 and 10 people; however, over the last three to five years, as more organizations have achieved success with Scrum, there has been increasing demand to use it across larger teams and projects.  

“There previously hadn’t been a lot of empirical data on how to do Agile in a large way," said Victor Szalvay, CTO and co-founder of Danube Technologies. "It was originally intended for small teams of course and the somewhat manual nature of (Scrum) practices and processes don’t really lend themselves well when you started to scale to larger groups and distributed groups.“

The Epic of Scrum

The problem with the traditional, hierarchical Work Breakdown Structure is the inability to prioritize tasks at the project level, said Szalvay. 

The notion of 'Epics' in ScrumWorks 4 removes the hierarchical approach and gives program and project managers greater, lateral flexibility in prioritizing tasks across multiple projects and departments.  ScrumWorks already employs the notion of 'Themes', a tag-based approach for labeling and categorizing tasks and activities in a project. With an Epic, you can now take a particular theme, or keyword, and promote it to a feature goal for the purposes of a particular milestone. 

Other new features in ScrumWorks Pro 4 include:

  • Program Management.  Coordinate multiple related development groups with cross-cutting releases and feature goals.  Track through to completion with high-level roll-ups of progress in a single cohesive interface.
  • High-level Feature Decomposition with Epics. Epics are the stated high-level features or goals associated with any milestone.  Define Epics and track progress at the project or program level.
  • Flexible Modeling of Development Organizations.  New Program capabilities in release 4 are flexible enough to accommodate and model complex structures such as shared component projects – where a single project group supplies core components to multiple end-products.
  • Enterprise Reporting.  Track feature and release milestone progress across multiple products.  Forecast completion and compare progress of contributing products in a Program release.  Monitor the scope of features at the program level along with progress breakdown.

You can learn more about ScrumWorks 4 Pro or request a trial license here
Published at DZone with permission of its author, Nitin Bharti.

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