September 23, 2015

Using TestTrack and The Scaled Agile Framework: Part 3

Helix ALM
Agile
In Part 1 and Part 2 of this series on using TestTrack and the Scaled Agile Framework® (SAFe®), we looked at how to use TestTrack to do your high level planning of epics, features, and user stories in program increments within your Agile release trains. This final part covers how you take all that work and flow these plans straight into delivery. We’ll also look at how that delivery is organized. (Spoiler alert: it’s Scrum sprints.)

Stage 3: TEAM

[caption id="attachment_17604" align="aligncenter" width="975"]The Team Stage of SAFe The Team Stage of SAFe (CREDIT: ScaledAgileFramework.com)[/caption]

Traditional Scrum Sprints

How does TestTrack help to deliver SAFe Stage 3: Team? Actually, it’s pretty straightforward. The previous two stages have created a backlog of ranked user stories. All that remains to be done is to deliver these user stories in a series of traditional Scrum sprints. (I can’t believe I am actually calling Scrum “traditional.” How time flies …) In this series, I assume that you are familiar with the basics of Scrum, so I won’t go into that in too much detail. Continuing from where you left off in Stage 2, you first need to organize your user stories into sprints, leaving some in the team backlog folder. You can then create a requirement-type task, and create new tasks directly from the task board. Finally, create an “item-mapping rule” that allows you to create tasks from user stories. I won’t go into this too much, but you can also add estimates in hours for your tasks in the normal way. (I didn’t mention it before, but epics and features are estimated in story points). These tasks drive the burn down and burn up charts either at the epic, feature, or task level. [caption id="attachment_17606" align="aligncenter" width="975"]SAFe task board A SAFe task board in TestTrack[/caption] That is all I’m actually going to say about Stage 3. I won’t go into how exactly you do Scrum in TestTrack, because it has been covered in other blog posts and TestTrack’s documentation. For the Team stage of SAFe, all you need to think about from a TestTrack perspective is that it is basically traditional Scrum sprints. This brings us to the end of this series on using SAFe with TestTrack. I hope you like the way TestTrack makes it easy for you to manage the various parts of SAFe or any other Scaled Agile model. The crucial point to grasp is that scaling Agile with TestTrack is a top-to-bottom integration of high-level enterprise planning to on-the-ground delivery. This allows you to implement real alignment, giving you insight and control over what is going on from the C-level while still allowing your Agile Teams the flexibility they need to be Agile. I am going to end by showing you a few dashboards, reports, and views which nicely illustrate the sort of info you can get from TestTrack to support your scaled Agile process. You’ll need to adapt this for your own use, of course, but these examples should give you a solid start. I hope you found this series useful. I would love to hear your views and questions, so please leave them in the comments. [caption id="attachment_17610" align="aligncenter" width="975"]Progress report A progress report in TestTrack[/caption] [caption id="attachment_17609" align="aligncenter" width="975"]V&V report V&V report in TestTrack[/caption] [caption id="attachment_17611" align="aligncenter" width="975"]Project dashboard Project dashboards in TestTrack show you what's happening as it happens.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_17612" align="aligncenter" width="975"]Key Metrics TestTrack dashboards also show you key metrics in real time.[/caption]