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Using Agile for things that
aren’t software
Tracey Williams
@tewilliam
February 2017
Agile 101
Agile is a project
management
method
Agile 101
Source: http://agilemanifesto.org/
Agile 101
Pioneering
Breaking new ground
Uncertain environment
Unpredictable
Standard
Known
Certain environment
Stable
Dia...
Agile 101
https://gds.blog.gov.uk/2014/04/01/a-year-in-the-making-the-digital-by-
default-service-standard/
Case Study - MOJ Digital Capability Project
Aim: Improve
digital capability
Generalist
Civil Servants
Digital
Specialists
...
Discovery, what did our users say?
1
3
2
24
People want to learn, but
not online.
“Face to face, interactive learning
is a...
User needs as user stories
As a... policy advisor
I need to... do learning courses at lunch times
So that... training fits...
Some characteristics to define a digitally capable person
1 Put user needs ahead of process
2 Start small, and improve fro...
In Agile, we take a small slice and deliver a product quickly
1 Put user needs ahead of process
2 Start small, and improve...
What happened next?
Alpha testing
options with
staff in Alpha
e.g. training,
workshops,
lunch & learn
Discovering
what wor...
Our Alphas
How did it go? The good stuff
People were excited to be
involved in something that
felt different
:)
How did it go? The good stuff
People found the sessions
useful and learnt from how
we were developing them
:)
How did it go? The good stuff
We discarded things early
that we might otherwise
have put into a formal
framework
:)
BUT...
We took too long to deliver
and the world moved on
before we could scale up
in Beta
:/
Agile - Practical Application
Some practical tips
on putting Agile into
practice
Agile - Practical Application
1 Read GDS Service Manual
www.gov.uk/service-manual
The principles
remain the same
for any p...
Agile - Practical Application
2
Get out there and speak to
USERS
(Though there can be heavy overlap)
Users ≠ Stakeholders
Agile - Practical Application
3
Test something small WITH
USERS within WEEKS
(Pilots usually take months,
too late to make...
Agile - Practical Application
4 Review user reactions at least
fortnightly, iterate model
based on that
based on ≠ “take i...
Agile - Practical Application
A couple to start with:
gds.blog.gov.uk/2015/10/09/how-to-be-agile-in-a-non-agile-environmen...
Tactics to overcome resistance
Tactics to overcome resistance
1 Persuasion
Civil Service style…. Exploit the hierarchy!
Have any leaders made statements ...
Can you just get on with it?
Tactics to overcome resistance
2
Rear Adm. Dr. Grace
Hopper
“It is easier to ask
forgiveness ...
Tactics to overcome resistance
3 Be Bold...
Read: medium.com/@JanetHughes
“[Being bold] involves taking a risk based on
a ...
Bonus slide: some wise words to end on
“The most difficult thing
is the decision to act, the
rest is merely tenacity.”
Ame...
Using Agile for things that
aren’t software
Tracey Williams
@tewilliam
February 2017
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Using agile for things that aren't software

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From UK Government Fast Stream Conference in February 2017, a presentation about how agile project management can be used for things that aren't software, including a case study on the successes and failures of a skills project.

Publicada em: Governo e ONGs
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Using agile for things that aren't software

  1. 1. Using Agile for things that aren’t software Tracey Williams @tewilliam February 2017
  2. 2. Agile 101 Agile is a project management method
  3. 3. Agile 101 Source: http://agilemanifesto.org/
  4. 4. Agile 101 Pioneering Breaking new ground Uncertain environment Unpredictable Standard Known Certain environment Stable Diagram simplified from Simon Wardley’s blog http://blog.gardeviance.org/2013/11/oh-not-again-should-we-be-agile-or-six.html Agile performs best Prince II etc. performs best Greater certainty
  5. 5. Agile 101 https://gds.blog.gov.uk/2014/04/01/a-year-in-the-making-the-digital-by- default-service-standard/
  6. 6. Case Study - MOJ Digital Capability Project Aim: Improve digital capability Generalist Civil Servants Digital Specialists Discovery Focus Non-Digital Specialist Civil Servants
  7. 7. Discovery, what did our users say? 1 3 2 24 People want to learn, but not online. “Face to face, interactive learning is a big investment, but compared to online learning, or just listening, it is worth it” People want to work digitally, but need leaders. “Oh, that would work! But I don’t think we would be allowed to do it.” People like digital tools, but exaggerate risks. “It’s obviously useful, is it IL3?” People know they have users, but not how to learn from them. “We held a consultation with users, it was hideous, people came back very upset”
  8. 8. User needs as user stories As a... policy advisor I need to... do learning courses at lunch times So that... training fits around the demands of my work For example:
  9. 9. Some characteristics to define a digitally capable person 1 Put user needs ahead of process 2 Start small, and improve from there 3 Make the most of digital tools 24 Manage risk, don’t be blocked by it 25 Feel empowered to innovate https://mojdigital.blog.gov.uk/2014/12/19/digital-capability-bringing-innovative- styles-of-working-to-moj/
  10. 10. In Agile, we take a small slice and deliver a product quickly 1 Put user needs ahead of process 2 Start small, and improve from there 3 Make the most of digital tools 24 Manage risk, don’t be blocked by it 25 Feel empowered to innovate Initial focus
  11. 11. What happened next? Alpha testing options with staff in Alpha e.g. training, workshops, lunch & learn Discovering what works best through user testing Make our offering scalable in Beta (via Civil Service Learning)
  12. 12. Our Alphas
  13. 13. How did it go? The good stuff People were excited to be involved in something that felt different :)
  14. 14. How did it go? The good stuff People found the sessions useful and learnt from how we were developing them :)
  15. 15. How did it go? The good stuff We discarded things early that we might otherwise have put into a formal framework :)
  16. 16. BUT... We took too long to deliver and the world moved on before we could scale up in Beta :/
  17. 17. Agile - Practical Application Some practical tips on putting Agile into practice
  18. 18. Agile - Practical Application 1 Read GDS Service Manual www.gov.uk/service-manual The principles remain the same for any project
  19. 19. Agile - Practical Application 2 Get out there and speak to USERS (Though there can be heavy overlap) Users ≠ Stakeholders
  20. 20. Agile - Practical Application 3 Test something small WITH USERS within WEEKS (Pilots usually take months, too late to make big changes) Alphas ≠ Pilots
  21. 21. Agile - Practical Application 4 Review user reactions at least fortnightly, iterate model based on that based on ≠ “take into account”
  22. 22. Agile - Practical Application A couple to start with: gds.blog.gov.uk/2015/10/09/how-to-be-agile-in-a-non-agile-environment/ www.gov.uk/service-manual/agile-delivery/agile-methodologies There are lots of useful blogs and other resources out there. Search for them!
  23. 23. Tactics to overcome resistance
  24. 24. Tactics to overcome resistance 1 Persuasion Civil Service style…. Exploit the hierarchy! Have any leaders made statements about change/transformation? What does your DG/Perm Sec want? Can you make your manager look good with this?
  25. 25. Can you just get on with it? Tactics to overcome resistance 2 Rear Adm. Dr. Grace Hopper “It is easier to ask forgiveness than it is to get permission” Imagesource:https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/blog/2014/12/22/honoring-grace-hopper
  26. 26. Tactics to overcome resistance 3 Be Bold... Read: medium.com/@JanetHughes “[Being bold] involves taking a risk based on a credible belief that you’re right, even if nobody else agrees with you at the time.”
  27. 27. Bonus slide: some wise words to end on “The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity.” Amelia Earhart “Done is better than perfect.” Sheryl Sandberg “The difference between successful people and others is how long they spend time feeling sorry for themselves.” Barbara Corcoran “You can’t be that kid standing at the top of the waterslide, overthinking it. You have to go down the chute.” Tina Fey
  28. 28. Using Agile for things that aren’t software Tracey Williams @tewilliam February 2017

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