Tips to Measure Success of Agile Implementation

08 Jan, 2016
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Measuring Agile success isn’t easy! Is this a problem you confront while assessing the effectiveness of Agile? Measuring the success of Agile implementation in software project becomes easy, if you choose the right metric. But, choosing the correct metric might be bit tricky. We have identified some key metrics which most Agile coaches use to measure success of Agile implementation.

Timely delivery

Most Agile coaches consider timely delivery as one of the key metrics to measure the success of their Agile implementation process. In Agile software development, timely delivery is generally measured by comparing it with the expectations and how they should be delivered. In such processes, burndown chart is seen as an effective metric to get a clear picture about what can be delivered on time, as per the expectations set in advance. Not only this, burndown chart also helps software teams to monitor how things are being accomplished.

Quality orientation

There is no doubt that the product which you are developing should be of high quality to compete in the market and get traction. So, the quality of product is definitely one of the metrics you must consider to measure the success of Agile.

Quality is not only measured in terms of how well the product has been developed; it also includes other aspects such as customer satisfaction, software testing methods and revenue growth. Velocity is widely accepted as an important metric to measure Agile team performance. Velocity helps the team understand how much they can deliver and in what duration, as the release date draws closer.

Defect tracking

With the help of Agile, development teams can reduce defects to a large extent. Defect tracking metrics enable Agile teams to be prepared to avert a situation like software failure. This metric particularly is worth considering when release timelines are short, and there is need of an objective picture of the agility of the product team. This metric is effective in measuring the test team’s effort and the turnaround time to remove a bug.

User satisfaction

As we have mentioned earlier, user satisfaction is seen as an important metric by many software teams to measure the success of Agile. You can measure your user satisfaction in many ways, which can be through Net Promoter score or recent sales figures. A large number of software teams also measure the number of support calls compared to the number of features delivered in a time period to assess customer satisfaction.

Scope for improvement

If you can identify the areas where there is scope for improvement in the product development process and make necessary updates immediately, you will be quite close to measuring  your Agile implementation successfully.

Continuous improvement is considered to be the core idea that drives Agile methodology. Several Agile coaches prefer to use cumulative flow chart to get an overview about how work is being carried out through the lifecycle. The flow chart not only helps Agile leaders to monitor work in progress, it also enables them to identify the existing bottlenecks. You can also consider cycle time, which enables the team to plan and do project predictions in advance.

 Team turnover

If your development team is healthy, it would reflect through a low team turnover. High turnovers in scrum teams indicate major issues with the project such as incompatibility, burnout rates. Before the project can progress further, these issues need to be dealt with upfront.

Metrics vary from team to team and primarily on the specific requirement of a team and organization. While there are whole lot of metrics to measure Agile success, you should only consider which ones are most relevant to your specific business needs and goals. 

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Anirban Guha
Software Engineer at coMakeIT

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