Better Software Conference & EXPO 2009


A Manager's Role in Agile Development: The Light Bulb Moment

Many managers have a large part of their personal identities wrapped up in their jobs and company responsibilities. We define who we are by what we do for a living. In agile development, the manager's job is very different from what most have learned and practiced. Managers struggle with what precisely their responsibilities are—and what to do each day.

Michele Sliger, Sliger Consulting, Inc.
A Solid Foundation for Quality Improvement

Many managers look to formal techniques-requirements reviews, code inspection, and testing-to improve the quality of their software. While these techniques are valuable, they only evaluate the state of quality rather than improve it. The key is to create quality software in the first place. This can only be achieved by a change in management style. Jason Bryant proposes a set of simple and effective principles you can employ to produce high quality software.

Jason Bryant, Schlumberger Information Solutions
Agile Adoption - Challenges and Strategies for New Teams

In coaching diverse teams on their roads to agile adoption, Rachel Weston has had the opportunity to witness and assist with the different challenges and pitfalls they experience. While each team is unique, a constant and focused "inspect-and-adapt" process has allowed them to identify their current pain points and develop personalized plans for handling them.

Rachel Weston, Rally Software Development
Agile, Lean, and the Project Management Office

PMOs usually think they are out of business when agile rolls into town. But the reality is that the PMO can play a pivotal role in successful agile adoption in large organizations.

Jean Tabaka, Rally Software Development
Architecture and Design: What Managers Need to Know

In many current software development approaches, architecture and design are downplayed. Rather than actually architecting products, good designs are assumed to "emerge." Yet, managers must be confident that their products are well designed. In their efforts to produce products quickly, teams may overlook vital architecture and design issues, such as performance, security, usability, and accessibility. When managers try to help, they can be deterred by jargon and tools that are difficult for non-programmers to understand.

Jonathan Kohl, Kohl Concepts Inc.

Becoming a Lean-Agile Enterprise

Many companies have adopted agile by using Scrum on one or more of their projects. Unfortunately, they may be missing the point that agility should be aimed at the enterprise, not merely at the team. Agile enterprises can respond quickly to changing market conditions, competitive pressures, and changing technical environments, thus bringing their innovations to market faster. However, creating an agile enterprise is much more than simply getting teams to adopt Scrum.

Alan Shalloway, Net Objectives
Better Software Conference & EXPO 2009: When to Step Up, When to Step Back

Leaders can stifle progress when they unnecessarily interfere with team processes. However, as a leader, you don't want your project to go over the cliff and fail miserably or deliver the wrong results either. There are times when leaders should stand back and let the team work things out for themselves-and other times when leaders should step up and really lead. How do you know which is which?

Pollyanna Pixton, Accelinnova

Better Software Conference 2009: A Software Quality Engineering Maturity Model

You are probably familiar with maturity models for software development. Greg Pope and Ellen Hill describe a corresponding five-stage maturity model for software quality-not just testing-which addresses the challenges faced by organizations attempting to improve the quality of their software. How do you go about transforming your organization to improve software quality in today’s better, cheaper, faster world?

Gregory Pope, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Communicating the Meaning Inside the Metrics

Measurement data is supposed to help you make better decisions; yet, the information provided under the term "metrics" is often confusing, obscure, or irrelevant to those who need it most. Those providing measurement data frequently produce charts, graphs, and reports that fail to illuminate significant conditions and leave decision makers clueless. The solution to the problem is understanding essential models of decision making and recognizing the need to communicate in the language of the decision maker-not in technological lingo.

Terry Vogt, Booz Allen Hamilton
Creating a 'Digital Cockpit' for Software Delivery

In many organizations, developing and delivering software has long been described as a "black box"-requests go in and many months later something comes out. But is it what was needed? Did it provide value to the organization? Was it a quality product? In many software projects, managers are flying blind and have very little in terms of meaningful or accurate data to guide their work.

Nicole Bryan, Borland Software Corporation


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