Join Doug Rose for an in-depth discussion in this video Identify a few tools, part of Agile Project Management: Comparing Agile Tools.
- [Instructor] So now we've reached the end of our journey together, and we've seen a lot. We looked at a lot of different agile tools, and we've evaluated them, we compared them to each other. Now that we've reached the end of our journey, we have the big question, which one of these tools is going to work best for me, at my organization? And for many of you, you're just not going to have a choice. There's going to be a lot of organizational momentum, depending on what your organization already uses. If you have a lot of developers, then you're probably going to have a strong leaning towards something like JIRA, because chances are your developers are using it anyway.
If you're a strong Microsoft shop, then you'll want to use Team Foundation Server, because a lot of the teams will already be familiar with this tool. CA's Rally is great if you have a strong engineering culture, because it seems very well designed for the engineering mindset. It doesn't really have too much flare, but it gets the job done. VersionOne is a great tool if you're just starting out with your agile transformation. And so if your organization is just starting their agile transformation, chances are you're already leaning in that direction.
And let's not forget about Microsost Excel. It's the most widely used agile tool for a reason. It's pretty much everywhere, it's quick, and it gets the job done. For many agile teams, this might be enough, and at least it's a very good place to start. So which one do you choose? Which one do you look at if you really don't have any organization momentum, if you just could make a choice based on no other pressure. If it were me, I would probably pick VersionOne, just because it makes the greatest effort to stick with the agile values that we outlined at the beginning of this course, the individuals and interactions over processes and tools.
There are plenty of opportunities to collaborate in the software, and it forces you to stay consistent with commonly accepted agile practices, such as relative estimating. It makes it very difficult for you to assign days or individuals to work, and that was relatively easy to do with other tools such as TFS and JIRA. Now if you're using VersionOne, you can always come back through after a couple of months and use AgilityHealth, which is the other software package that we looked at. This tool will help you check and give insight into the team's health, but again the downside to that program is that it's bundled in with a lot of other services.
It's also really geared more towards enterprise agile transformations. It's when you have teams of a half-dozen or more. So as we look through these tools, I want to remind you of what we talked about at the beginning of the course. No tool should overshadow the importance of collaboration. It's a key agile value, so you don't want everybody face down and focused on the tool. If you're using the tool and you see people staring at their screens during meetings, then you may want to take a step back and remember the agile values, the importance of having the developers collaborating with each other, talking with each other, and trying to figure out how to develop the software in face-to-face interactions.
If you can remember that key agile value, then you can get a lot from all of these different tools.
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- Remembering agile values
- Evaluating different agile tools, including cloud-based options
- Creating a backlog with Excel
- Setting up sprints in JIRA
- Portfolio planning in VersionOne
- Creating tasks in Microsoft's Team Foundation Server
- Running reports with CA Agile Central
- Checking team analytics in CA Agile Central
- Deciding which tool fits your team