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Managing Agile Development Projects with HP PPM Center and HP Quality Center

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worked on--including project health data, non-project work, resource allocations, and cost information. Agile frameworks are rapidly gaining popularity This integrated solution gives you the unique ability among software developers in enterprises of all types to aggregate both Agile and waterfall projects and and sizes. But with the promise of faster development see the critical interdependencies among projects-- and better software quality comes an even greater for example whether the resource demands of an challenge--supporting dozens of fast-paced projects operational project or other activity might prevent you without losing track of the big picture--aligning IT with from undertaking a proposed project. This capability business objectives to increase business outcomes. enables you to manage and prioritize the collected work so you can ensure that the right people are With multiple development projects--both Agile and working on the right tasks at the right time. You can waterfall--underway or under consideration at any given time, how do you keep your IT team from getting capture all the details about all current work so every decision is supported by hard data. overcommitted, over budget and overwhelmed? Step one is to gain complete visibility into all your Once an Agile project is underway, the high-level operational and strategic activities, and determine key project information is passed to HP Quality which ones will deliver the best business results. Center which can help break down the Product Vision and Epic-level requirements into more Whether your organization is predominantly Agile specific deliverables--the User Stories. HP Quality or is working in a hybrid mode of both Agile and Center--which is tightly integrated with HP PPM traditional lifecycle methods, IT management needs Center--combines the elements of requirements to implement effective and flexible controls across the entire organization. Understanding project milestones, management, release planning and quality management into one scalable, Web-based solution deliverables, resource and budget requirements that is ideally suited to manage the process of and keeping track of the project health and quality creating, organizing, and prioritizing the User Stories. indicators allow IT management to bring order HP Quality Center helps capture User Stories and to chaos. Without such controls and visibility, it is stores them in a centralized global repository that is impossible to reduce project schedule and budget accessible to all team members. Any changes to the overruns, reduce the risks and achieve true User Stories are immediately known to the entire team, business agility. making iteration planning easier and more accurate. This paper discusses how HP Project and Portfolio HP Quality Center then helps trace the User Stories Management (PPM) Center and HP Quality Center throughout the testing process to make sure that teams (QC) software can give you the information you need are focusing their effort on the right areas and are to make better business decisions, lower the cost of fixing the defects that affect the most critical running both your Agile and traditional development business functionality. projects, increase collaboration between business and Software engineering with Agile methodology is IT and improve application quality. We will highlight the core elements of Agile development methodologies a team effort, and HP PPM Center and HP Quality Center are specifically designed for collaborative and explore how Agile development can be aligned engineering across the development cycle--planning, with the basic principles of project and portfolio design, testing, editing, change management, and management to make sure that IT objectives meet the ongoing maintenance. They are closely integrated to company's business goals. allow data to flow seamlessly between stages and to enable control points and reporting at any point in the The HP Solution for Managing lifecycle. Together, these solutions are exceptionally Agile Projects capable of supporting both Agile and traditional IT HP Software provides an integrated platform for projects. They enable you to align business goals with planning, staffing and monitoring Agile development technical resources, help you enhance the business projects, as well as managing application quality. outcomes of IT projects, and are comprehensive and HP PPM Center offers a consolidated view of all IT flexible enough to deliver true business agility without activities so that management has better visibility into the added weight of rigid, bureaucratic processes the portfolio, more effective controls, greater flexibility project teams will object to adopting. in applying automated processes, and better-defined quality standards. With the HP solution, your project and portfolio management system can give your organization visibility into everything that is being


Figure 1: Agile methods focus on delivering working software features with acceptable quality in short iterations, each containing steps for project planning, requirements analysis, design, coding, testing, and documentation

Scrum Master

Daily Scrum Meeting

Product Owner

1 2 3 4

The Team Sprint Planning Meeting


No Changes

(in Duration or Deliverable)

Sprint Review

5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13

Potentially Shippable Product

Product Backlog

Sprint Retrospective

Diagram Source: GoodAgile--Introduction to Scrum for Managers and Executives

Main Principles of Agile Development

There is no single Agile method, but rather a set of at least 14 broadly recognized methods centered around a number of common principles: rapid release cycles, value-driven development, team collaboration, continuous planning and improvement, and customer involvement. Instead of extensive upfront investment and planning, Agile methods focus on delivering working software features with acceptable quality in short "time-boxes"--or iterations--that typically last one to six weeks. Each iteration includes all of the tasks necessary to release the mini-increment of new functionality--planning, requirements analysis, design, coding, testing, and documentation. At the end of each iteration, the team re-evaluates project priorities. Agile methods emphasize real-time communication and empower people to collaborate and make decisions together quickly and effectively. Most Agile teams are cross-functional and include all the people necessary to build the software. All Agile methods value continuous evolution of both the project and the software, are lightweight and inherently adaptable.

a high degree of clarity and transparency for all stakeholders--the development team, customers, product owners, management and others. Despite its "rebellious" nature, the basic phases of a Scrum development process are not that dissimilar from those used in any other type of project. Project managers, product managers and project sponsors plan, define and initiate the development project, the development team executes the plan, and together they monitor and control the results. However, traditional development methods define a single sequence of initiation, investigation, design, coding, and testing for each project, while Agile development projects rely on multiple fixed-length iterations, each including planning, development, and assessment phases. In the Scrum development method, the Product Owner owns the Vision--a high-level strategic idea for the product, its intended uses and the value that it would provide for a specific customer base. The Vision contains input from customers, end-users, executives, sales, support, and other external and internal stakeholders. The Product Owner organizes the Vision into a single list of project proposals that needs to be evaluated and prioritized based on the business value and risk. This prioritized list of requested features and functionality is referred to as the Product Backlog. The next step is to break down the large ambiguous features--or Epics--into smaller, well-defined User Stories that can be easily consumed by the development teams in the next iteration, or Sprint. Sprint is a fixed period of development time which typically takes between one and four weeks. Before each Sprint, the team selects which User Stories from the Product Backlog it will commit to, and creates a Task-level plan for how they will deliver the results. For each Task, the team estimates the required time

Scrum: Overview, Basic Concepts and Jargon

For the purpose of this paper, we will use the example, concepts and jargon of a single, and perhaps the most popular Agile development method--Scrum. Scrum is a simple but powerful framework for development teams and customers to continuously monitor project progress and quality and use the feedback to surface problems, adapt the processes and adjust the project scope. Scrum is deeply rooted in collaboration and provides


commitment and compares it with the total available development hours to make sure that they do not over-commit for this Sprint. The commitment level and the due dates do not change during the Sprint. The team meets daily to discuss Sprint progress, list tasks that have been completed and need to be accomplished in the next day, and report any roadblocks. The ScrumMaster keeps track of these meetings and monitors the daily progress. The team also updates several simple charts: ·The Sprint Backlog lists all current tasks and the hours remaining for completing each one ·The Burndown Chart totals the number of hours remaining for all tasks ·The Task Board shows all tasks that are in-progress. The goal for each Sprint is to deliver all the functionality the team has promised to deliver and to produce a complete piece of product functionality that has been designed, developed, and tested with acceptable level of quality. At the end of each Sprint, the Product Owner, ScrumMaster and the team review the finished product, discuss the development process, and incorporate the feedback into the Product Backlog and future Sprints.

To help make strategic decisions on which Agile projects will be given the green light, HP PPM Center gives you the portfolio or investment planning tools to analyze the trade-offs among various investment alternatives. This creates virtually unlimited scenariobased planning capabilities and gives you the ability to forecast the financial and technical impacts of changes. With HP PPM Center you can clearly see what resources and capabilities are available at any given time for your fast-paced Agile development projects.

Building a Product Vision: Initiating a Project Proposal

To initiate an Agile project, the Product/Application Owner creates the high-level Project Vision and submits it as a project proposal within HP PPM Center. Based on the project details and supporting business case that are included in the proposal, the Portfolio Manager can begin the process of evaluating it against other initiatives--proposed or in-flight--and make a decisions on whether the project will be funded. HP PPM Center lets business and IT stakeholders collaboratively govern the entire IT portfolio with multiple levels of input, review, and approval. From proposal initiation, justification and review to project initiation, execution, deployment and benefits realization, HP PPM Center uses automatic, real-time updates and a clear and flexible process to keep all stakeholders involved. To streamline the process of submitting the project proposal, the Product/Application Owner can leverage the powerful and flexible workflow engine within HP PPM Center. HP PPM Center facilitates the process of gathering input from all stakeholders, routes the proposal through required approval stages and consolidates all supporting materials in a central location, transforming the high-level Product Vision into a detailed project proposal.

Strategic Planning for Your Agile Projects with HP PPM Center software

Agile frameworks emerged as an alternative to extensive project planning. However, before any new Agile project can begin, or even be considered, IT management needs to gain a complete view of everything that is going on in IT--proposed projects, application changes, strategic initiatives, services provided and all relevant operational activities--in order to make realistic resource and time commitments and to select the projects that best align with the company's business objectives. You also need to continuously monitor project health to respond to fast-changing portfolio needs quickly. Unlike approaches that offer only time-reporting systems and project scheduling tools, HP PPM Center offers top-down planning capabilities that are tightly coupled with bottom-up details of the project execution. HP PPM Center integrates project and portfolio management, program management and other key functions with all relevant operational activities, to enable that you have up-to-the minute visibility into your total IT workload.

Creating a Product Roadmap: Managing Agile IT Projects

Once the proposal is approved, it becomes an IT project. At this stage, a high-level Product Vision is broken down into several Epics--specific definitions of the product's features and functionality that span multiple releases. An Epic is a big enough slice of product functionality to have its own plan, resource estimates, and milestones. The Product/Application Owner can initiate an IT project for each Epic, in order to plan and track its phases, deliverables, and tasks. And just as multiple Epics stem from a single vision, multiple


Figure 2: HP PPM Center acts as the central point of control for managing and continuously assessing the health of the project

IT projects can be linked to the same proposal, which contains all the supporting information, background, and value propositions. The HP PPM Center Project Management module provides a Web-based platform for project collaboration among team members and stakeholders with real-time visibility into resources, processes, status and inter-project dependencies. Agile Product/ Application Owners and team members can plan and schedule Sprints, create preliminary staffing plans and track project status, health and deliverables through the HP PPM Center Project Management dashboards. Throughout the duration of the project, the Project Management module can act as the central location for managing and continuously assessing the health of the project. HP PPM Center also offers bi-directional integration with Microsoft Project.

HP Quality Center is a collaborative, Web-based solution that can help Agile teams organize and manage the User Stories in a central repository. The HP Quality Center Requirements Management module contains customizable hierarchical fields for capturing the User Story and its attributes: name, description, fit criteria, owner, estimated efforts and all related tasks. All User Stories are typically stored in order of priority and referred to as Product Backlog. To plan the next Sprint, the development team selects the top User Stories from the Product Backlog and adds them to the next cycle. HP Quality Center supports the concepts of release and cycle management as integrated parts of the Application Quality Management process. With HP Quality Center, you can see not only detailed descriptions of each Sprint, but also complete statistics on the User Stories that are included in this Sprint, test plans associated with it, and detailed quality information. In most Agile methods, User Stories are further broken down into Tasks--the actionable work items that get assigned to individual team members. HP Quality Center allows for tracking and managing of Tasks as part of its Requirements Management module. Tasks are defined as a requirement type, and the process of creating, refining and completing the Tasks is governed by the customizable workflow within HP Quality Center. For example, when the Task is first added, it is assigned a "draft" status. After the definition has been completed and the ScrumMaster has added the effort estimate, the Task status changes to "defined". As soon as the Task is assigned an owner, its status changes to "in progress", and finally when the Task is finished, its status is set to "completed".

Managing User Stories with HP Quality Center

One of the most important concepts in all Agile development methodologies is the notion of value-driven User Stories. Rather than trying to find a product idea that will satisfy many kinds of different customers, Agile Product/Application Owners attempt to connect each product feature with its intended user and focus on the value that it provides for this user. A User Story could be a product requirement, an internal deliverable, or any other type of a container for related tasks. All User Stories must be small enough to be completed within a single Sprint. The integrated solution from HP allows for User Stories to be derived directly from the Product Vision and Epic details that were captured during the planning phase of the Agile project.


Figure 3: Through tight integration between HP PPM Center and HP Quality Center, key Agile project information is accessible to all team members, allowing for greater visibility and control at every stage of the development process

Create Proposal Evaluate Proposal Approve Proposal funding Create Project Define Project WBS

Break Epic-level requirements into User Stories and Tasks

HP Quality Center Epic-level requirements

Summary resource assignment at Sprint level HP PPM Center

Manage the Backlog of User Stories and Tasks

Assign User Stories and Tasks to Sprints

Total Story points added in QC

Execute and update Tasks during Sprints

Burndown Charts and other reporting

Each User Story typically includes the high-level preliminary estimate of engineering hours required to complete it. After the Sprint has started, these numbers can be refined based on the more accurate, Task-level estimates. All time estimates in HP Quality Center can be aggregated to the Sprint or release level, enabling the Agile development teams to make more accurate commitments for each cycle. The same aggregated view can be used by the ScrumMaster to monitor the progress of Sprints and releases. Integrated, customizable graphs and reports in HP Quality Center allow the Agile teams to quickly view the essential graphs, such as the Backlog and the Burndown charts.

Building a Quality Center of Excellence

The idea of establishing a Center of Excellence (CoE) for managing the quality of Agile applications may first sound illogical to an organization focused on quick and nimble development. The truth however is that managing quality as a shared service can actually help you achieve better business results faster and with less process overhead. HP Center Management for Quality Center is built on HP PPM and Quality Center software and provides pre-packaged content and workflows to automate key processes for quality management and enables best practices for project collaboration as well as project and resource management. HP Center Management for Quality Center provides a single dashboard view for application owners to create, manage and track both Agile and traditional development projects. This view improves the project delivery process and helps you properly assign resources to tasks and manage them efficiently based on the business criticality of each project. HP Center Management for Quality Center also helps enforce best practices by enabling the shared CoE to define a QA project template that can be reused by different Agile projects. With a Quality Center CoE, you can simultaneously track the quality of multiple Agile projects, gain real-time visibility into requirements, tests and defects, aggregate results and reporting across multiple HP Quality Center instances and projects and improve your organization's quality practices.

Managing quality in Agile projects with HP Quality Center

HP Quality Center provides a Web-based, integrated system for automated software quality testing and management across a wide range of application environments. It provides the visibility needed to validate both functionality and automated business processes--and identifies bottlenecks in production that hamper business outcomes. HP Quality Center enables Agile teams to engage in application testing even before the development process is complete, thereby providing the ability to accelerate release schedules while maintaining a high-level of quality. HP Quality Center is an effective tool for Agile QA because it is specifically designed to facilitate the type of collaboration and crosspollination that is key to Agile software engineering. To learn more about HP Quality Center and its support for Agile quality methods, visit


Figure 4: HP Quality Center allows for tracking and managing of Agile project Tasks as part of its Requirements Management module

Multi-Backlog handling for enabling Scrum-of-Scrum First Level contains Backlogs and Cycles All items are assigned to a specific target Release and Cycle

Aggregated Effort per level for Estimates, Actuals and Remaining and Percentage Completed


There is no question that Agile methodologies are here to stay. They are gaining traction in large enterprise development organizations and are being successfully used to build mission-critical financial, healthcare, and government software systems. But it would be a mistake to assume that implementing Agile techniques removes the need for enterprise portfolio management, demand, resource and budget planning and project management. On the contrary, with so many Agile development projects being proposed and already underway in any organization, IT management needs even greater visibility into all IT projects, a way to manage and prioritize IT investments, flexible controls over the release processes and solid compliance objectives. The strength of HP PPM Center is in enabling collaborative decision making that complements the basic Agile principle of "individuals and interactions over processes and tools". It works especially well across geographies, with Web-based collaboration and the free flow of information among project stakeholders and different teams. This helps support the offshore outsourcing models for IT development projects.

Together, HP PPM Center and HP Quality Center help you focus on optimizing business outcomes rather than just running individual Agile projects. Using the integrated HP solution, companies can achieve the true alignment between business and IT that leads to a transformation in business results. Sources: ·Focus on Value: How to create value-driven user stories by Chris Sterling ·Glossary of Scrum Terms by Victor Szalvay ·GoodAgile Introduction to Scrum for Managers and Executives


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© Copyright 2009­2010 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. The only warranties for HP products and services are set forth in the express warranty statements accompanying such products and services. Nothing herein should be construed as constituting an additional warranty. HP shall not be liable for technical or editorial errors or omissions contained herein. 4AA2-4193ENW Rev. 2, January 2010


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