I am an Agile Coach for a bunch of Business Intelligence Engineers and Data Scientists.
There is generally speaking 2 different work item types which they undertake:
- User facing reports and dashboards e.g. Business Objects, Looker
- Platform related enablement e.g. Airflow data pipelines, AWS configuration, Snowflake and S3 work
I have tried everything but I have not managed to get the team to work in vertical slices - they just say that its impossible and so they essentially work in horizontal slices with each team member working from his/her own backlog of technical tasks e.g.
One developer will constantly work on new data pipelines and maintain existing data pipelines.
One developer will only do Looker or BO.
One developer will do exclusively Snowflake related activities etc.
The work does marry up eventually but there is so little user facing value that the business is starting to get unhappy.
There are a few more variables which make my problem more complex. We don't have Product Management skills within the team - we do have a PO but he is a business person with no real agile IT experience.
Also, the ask of the team is also to embed the skills of creating dashboards and reports within the business users e.g. self-serve.
My question is simple - how do I get my team to work in agile way and slice things vertically.