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22
votes
6answers
16k views

What role should a technical architect play in Project Management?

I've recently been given the role of Technical Architect in my organization (I will also be project managing some projects and developing if the 10-12 senior developers are all too busy). I'm ...
22
votes
2answers
825 views

Kanban: A cure for what ails me, or snake oil du jour?

I manage a team of developers and testers that makes widgets. We manage several dozen widgets; in addition to creating new widgets, we have to update old ones with new functionality and fix urgent ...
21
votes
22answers
54k views

“Start to finish” dependency example?

Can you give me an example of a Start to Finish dependency? Wikipedia describes it like this: Start to finish (SF) A SF B = B can't finish before A starts
21
votes
6answers
114k views

PMP Experience Documentation [closed]

I am looking to take the PMP exam in a year or so, and see that one of the requirements is "at least three years of project management experience, with 4,500 hours leading and directing projects." ...
21
votes
5answers
19k views

What is the difference between Scrum and XP?

Everything is in the title: What is the difference between Scrum and eXtreme Programming? Is it possible to have a simple but explicit explanation?
21
votes
6answers
2k views

How do you manage technical debt?

In real world, business initiatives always take higher priority as there are associated ROIs and deliver something tangible to the users. But there are technical initiatives and projects that need to ...
21
votes
6answers
14k views

Where should design be incorporated in an agile process?

We use a scrum-based agile development process. But where should design get incorporated? Separate user stories? Tasks on stories? We currently think of design as a separate task and break it out as ...
21
votes
3answers
38k views

Sprint Backlog vs Product Backlog

I was always under impression that Sprint Backlog is part of Product Backlog -> it's impossible to add anything into Sprint Backlog without affecting Product Backlog However, according to one of the ...
21
votes
5answers
30k views

Definition of Project Success

How do you define a successful project? Is success contingent on the overall value that the product or service yielded for the organization? If the project was successfully delivered, that is the ...
21
votes
7answers
49k views

How to measure quality in a software development project?

Quality is one of the four key project constraints, which need to be planned and controlled by a project manager during the entire project lifecycle. In order to plan and control it the PM, first of ...
21
votes
8answers
11k views

How to apply Scrum in fixed date, fixed budget project?

Considering that we work on a project with fixed deadlines and fixed budget and we use Scrum: what are best practices we should use to make this setup successful? Since Scrum wasn't directly designed ...
21
votes
3answers
9k views

How can a team working on research based items work in an Agile project?

My R&D organization is following an Agile (Scrum) development methodology. One of the development teams is working mostly on items that are really problematic in terms of the certainty during the ...
21
votes
4answers
7k views

Should defects flow through the Kanban board, or should they be tracked as issues?

One of the things that I'm still trying to wrap my head around is defect tracking. Should we put defects on the Board and track them alongside the other items (new features, refactoring work etc), ...
21
votes
6answers
2k views

Is Software Architecture still Relevant in Agile ?

Agile focuses on developing workable codes from small user stories. Pair programming encourage developers to pair up, actively engage with one another to come up with the best solution for the problem....
21
votes
1answer
1k views

Fogbugz Evidence Based Scheduling

Has any one in the community used 'evidence-based scheduling' by Fogcreek's fogbugz to come up with estimates and schedules on your real projects? I understand the basis of this technique (well ...
20
votes
5answers
8k views

What is a failed sprint?

A sprint has just ended. All stories, but one were done by the software engineers. Should the sprint be labeled as 'failed' because of the story that was not completed? What exactly is a failed sprint?...
20
votes
7answers
16k views

Is Certified Scrum Master valuable?

What is the value in Certified Scrum Master certifications? I'll be quite honest in saying that I've never put a lot of thought into such certifications, but it seems like if you are interested in ...
20
votes
7answers
7k views

How to apply daily stand-up meetings with a large team on multiple projects

Background There are: 4 .Net Developers 4 PHP Developers 2 QA Specialists 2 Integration Specialists 2 Analysts 3 PMs 11 Projects in active development. None are trivial. Some are programs with sub-...
20
votes
11answers
9k views

How to take minutes of meeting effectively?

I have one on one meetings with manager and senior members of our company. They raise points in meetings and I note down on paper. Can anyone tell me what are the formats to note minutes of meetings? ...
20
votes
10answers
3k views

Clients do not respond. How to manage that?

I am currently a Project Manager at web development company working on always more than one project (rarely big project for more than 3 months and most often small project up to 1 month). As we open ...
20
votes
5answers
2k views

Managing projects across time zones

When managing a project that involves participants across the globe, it is quite manageable for any two timezones to meet (someone will be at the end of their shift while someone is starting theirs), ...
20
votes
5answers
4k views

Why are estimates treated like deadlines?

This is one thing that I've always taken as a given, the "status quo" in my line of field (software development) but never really gave it a deep thought. And even now that I do, I still don't ...
20
votes
6answers
3k views

What role is there for a PM on an Agile project?

Back before agile was everywhere, having a PM on all but the smaller projects was considered essential. Now, only the largest projects have people assigned to just in a PM capacity. I guess I have ...
20
votes
4answers
7k views

How should a team handle disagreements about story-point estimates in Scrum?

During estimation, the Product Owner presents a user story that seems clear to a team that usually knows their strengths and weaknesses, and that is not hostile. What should the Scrum Master do if the ...
20
votes
5answers
306 views

How do you get the most value out of a PM who can do everything?

This excellent post by Joel struck home (The gorilla with too many hats), and made me think. Many project managers started out as individual contributors, and may have strong technical skills in a ...
20
votes
8answers
3k views

Is it possible to over-communicate in project team?

Communication issues in projects are very common. Often the advice we give others or get from others is to communicate more and to be more transparent and most of the time it works. The question is ...
20
votes
7answers
15k views

How can we manage multiple projects, as one small scrum team?

I know Agile came about as a group of 'adaptive software development' methods, where Scrum is one of them. Some background: We are an innovative web agency, which implies design and development. We ...
19
votes
17answers
1k views

Is development experience required to become a PM in the IT sector?

This question has been stuck in my head for a long time. To become a project manager in the IT sector, should one have development experience, or a strong focus on general project management skills? ...
19
votes
13answers
13k views

Is it correct to refer to a 'post mortem' session even for successful projects?

It might be a silly question for non-latin speakers, but it's odd to hear about a post-mortem meeting for a successful project since this expression means 'after death'. I know that this can be also ...
19
votes
8answers
4k views

Rewards or Penalties? Or just rewards?

What motivational mechanism works more effectively - penalties or rewards? I'm also interested to know whether penalties are used in modern software development teams. If they are - in what form? ps. ...
19
votes
10answers
4k views

How to manage employees leaving the company?

Some time ago, the company had to downsize due to difficulties, now things are going better, but employees are still leaving the company. There is no budget to increase the salary or benefits right ...
19
votes
5answers
20k views

What is the role of a QA tester on a Scrum team?

I've recently added a QA tester to our new Scrum team. The tester comes with a lot of experience in automated testing and is capable of scripting, light coding, etc. He will be using automation tools, ...
19
votes
6answers
1k views

How to Create Better Communicators on Your Team?

I work with a team who is distributed. Most of our staff works remotely. As a result, communication is much more important. The team consists of managers, supervisors, marketing personnel, web ...
19
votes
7answers
19k views

Agile methodologies such as Scrum in non-software development projects

Even though Scrum was originally suggested for managing product development projects, its use has focused on the management of software development projects. None of the project management teams I ...
19
votes
6answers
4k views

Running a sprint from Wednesday till Wednesday

Currently we have three teams who start their two week sprint on Monday and end it on Friday. We have some team-members who have every Friday off. Planning sprint reviews on Thursdays or earlier is ...
19
votes
7answers
73k views

What is the difference between framework vs methodology?

What the difference is between a methodology and a framework? And where does the process come into that story? And perhaps, it would be good to have this comparison explained by using methodologies ...
19
votes
7answers
2k views

What is the relation between PMBOK and real world Project Management?

While I was studying for my PMP certification I learned many things that over my course of 10 years I was doing differently. Now after being a PMP for a year, I see how you can get value from the ...
19
votes
5answers
7k views

Agile team missing commitments regularly and complaining about no trust

I am on the product side and have an agile team that has missed every sprint commitment through the first 4 by between 40 and 60% measured by points. The team continues to say, that it is OK and that ...
19
votes
4answers
2k views

How to appropriately balance project activities with support tasks

I have a small team of experts (12 staff) who do great project work. Unfortunately, their expertise makes them the go-to individuals on support tasks as well. The inability to focus on projects ...
19
votes
4answers
8k views

Difference in responsibilities between lead developer and project manager for support workload

Full disclosure: I am working as a lead developer for a team of around 6 developers, not as a project manager. But this seemed like a good place to ask. Background: Recently the team is covering more ...
19
votes
10answers
8k views

What alternatives are there to a weekly status report to collect team members' progress on assigned work?

Each week I issue a personalised email to everyone in the business (there are only 17 of us) with the following headings: Can you provide a brief status report for this week based on your assigned ...
19
votes
9answers
3k views

Individual accountability on agile projects

My organization has been doing waterfall for many years, but we are dipping our toes in the agile pond currently. So far we have had a couple successful projects using agile so everyone is gung ho ...
19
votes
9answers
2k views

Leading (predictive) Metrics?

I was wondering what useful leading metrics people might be using to predict failures/issues after release. (I'm assuming SW projects). There are lots of lagging metrics that capture what has ...
19
votes
8answers
2k views

How to manage a Web Project

I'm a web developer, working in a small web development firm. usually we have small set of projects, using PHP & MySQL, and a small team with less than 4. But some times its hard to recollect ...
19
votes
7answers
21k views

How do you report project status? [closed]

What is the typical project reporting model are you using in your project team? When I say reporting, I am talking about both reporting externally to stakeholders and internally to all team members. ...
19
votes
6answers
2k views

What personality traits suggest that a person should move towards project management?

I've just started as an intern for a big company, so this obviously doesn't immediately apply to me. I love programming, however, I'm still considering potential career paths I may be most suited for....
19
votes
3answers
12k views

How to organize knowledge within a wiki?

Using wikis as a knowledge database becomes more popular since a few years. But now I realized that most of the knowledge is lost because: articles are out-dated there is more than one page for the ...
19
votes
8answers
870 views

Implementing new software development process

Question: Apologies for the long post, but I'm not sure how to handle this. Background: We have a development team of 3 situated in another city. The lead developer has been around for 6 years and ...
18
votes
13answers
36k views

How do you name Sprints in Scrum?

I was wondering if it's a good idea to name Sprints with user-friendly names instead of using numerals like Sprint 1, Sprint 2, etc. Are there best practices or standards for naming the Sprint after ...
18
votes
14answers
6k views

A person in a project team not willing to follow the rules - what to do?

You're a project manager and set some rules how you expect the project team to behave, e.g. you want summary of the daily work in your inbox at the end of the day from each of project team members. ...

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