AACE Source June 2017 - 19
Any obstacles and/or issues
In summary, planning on an agile
project is not drastically different from a
waterfall project. The product vision and
product roadmap involve pre‐project
planning and are the same for agile or
waterfall projects. The release plan is the
agile planning document that somewhat
resembles a project plan. The difference
is that detailed scope, schedule and
budgets are established on waterfall
projects, while on agile projects scope,
schedule and budget are done at a
summary level. The agile iteration plan is
very similar to the two week look‐ahead
plan used on some construction
projects. Agile uses brief daily planning
and status meetings, known as daily
scrums, and construction projects can
also use daily meetings.
Figure 6 - The Five Levels of Agile Planning
Figure 7 - User Story Format
waterfall teams. This includes having
dedicated team members, co‐location of
team members, empowered and
collaborative team members, and a good
working relationship with the customer.
Planning on Agile Projects
One of the myths associated with
agile projects is that no planning is done,
and that's not the case. There are five
levels of agile planning as shown in
Figure 6, and the levels are as follows:
Product Vision-This is what a new
product or the next product version
should look like.
Product Roadmap-This is a high‐
level chronological depiction of how
the product will be brought to
construction projects needed to
make, store and/or distribute the
Release Planning-This is the agile
planning document that most
resembles the project plan. The
preliminary list of features to be
included with each release and a
high‐level schedule. The release
plan can also include other project
documents such as a risk register
and communications plan.
Iteration Planning-This is done just
before the start of each iteration.
The team, working with the product
owner, decides on the work that will
be done during the next iteration,
and the product functionality that
will be delivered. The work that will
be done during the iteration is
planned at a detail level, including
tasks, resources, hours and dates.
Iteration planning is analogous to
the two week look‐ahead plan used
on some construction projects.
Daily Planning-This is done each
day during the iteration, and is also
called the daily scrum. Daily
planning meetings are used on
some construction projects, such as
a power plant shutdown for
equipment and control upgrades.
The core team assembles for a brief
stand‐up meeting to discuss three
Work accomplished since
Work that will be done by
As discussed earlier in this article,
with agile methodologies requirements
and scope evolve over the life of the
project. One of the key tools to uncover
requirements on an agile project is the
use of user stories. By definition, "a user
story represents a small, concise
statement of functionality or quality
needed to deliver value to a specific
stakeholder [10, p. 359]." The user story
captures who (a user role), what (a
necessary action, feature or quality) and
why (the benefit or value received by the
user). A typical format for writing user
stories is shown in Figure 7.
Examples of user stories are as
As a Facebook user, I want to update
my profile so that potential friends
may find me.
As a telecommuting employee, I
want to go seamlessly from my cell
phone to my office phone while
staying on the conference call so
that I don't have to leave and then
re‐enter the conference.
As a production supervisor, I want to
have a weekly summary report on
yield and quality by crew so that I
can save time.
As a control room operator, I want a
mix tank low level alarm so that I
know when to add more chemicals.
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