COVID’s Impact On Agile Project Management
Agile project management has been at the forefront of the software development world for over twenty years. It has revolutionised the way software is delivered and developed.
Over the years, agile methodologies have spread to other industries because of its undeniable success. Any project with a specialist-client structure can benefit from agile project management.
The COVID pandemic has dramatically changed the way all of us work and in a very short space of time. Because most major countries across the globe enforced lockdowns and stay at home messages, millions of teams had to adapt to working differently.
Agile project management is all about concrete deliverables and frequent communication between the team. This is so that challenges and scope changes can be understood and addressed by all. Suddenly, finding entire teams out of the office and working remotely has significantly impacted agile project management.
Today, we are looking at how COVID has impacted agile approaches and how this is evolving future working practices.
The Rise Of Virtual Meetings
One of the key features of agile project management is having regular, face to face meetings. This is because it gives the whole team the chance to catch up on the project and communicate where it is at. Most agile businesses hold daily face to face meetings where they brainstorm and decide on the next iterations of the project.
Because of COVID, these in-person meetings became impossible for most businesses. Suddenly, teams were not working from the same locations, and everyone had to adapt quickly.
Businesses have utilised video conferencing technology to continue these regular meetings and keep their projects on track. Zoom and other virtual meeting platforms have been essential because they allow agile teams to stay in contact.
For many organisations, virtual meetings are set to continue as the norm even in a post-COVID world. It is likely that going forward, agile project management will be a blend of online and in-person communication.
Many teams will prefer to meet in person during the discovery stages of a project. This is because creativity and ideas can flow more freely when everyone is in the same room. During the planning and delivery stages, virtual meetings are often more than suitable to conduct regular updates.
Technology advances have made it easier than ever for agile teams to communicate every stage of the project remotely. Video demonstrations, screen sharing, and virtual libraries are all useful tools for agile project management.
Although remote meetings were an emergency response to COVID in 2020, many businesses have learnt the benefits they can bring. Because teams can work productively from home, many are more willing to work on projects outside of standard business hours. This opens up a new realm of opportunities because teams can collaborate with experts and customers from all over the globe.
Improving Data Management Processes
Agile project management revolves around delivering large projects in small iterations. Because of COVID and virtual working, many businesses are discovering that collecting and organising client data right from the start of the project is crucial.
When in-person meetings are not possible, it is essential that teams know how to access and deliver the relevant data for the project. Agile project managers now know they must ask the right data questions and organise that data appropriately.
Data management practices like this are becoming more and more common in agile project management. They can benefit both the business and the client because it is easier to reach the deliverables. Teams are informing one another of early goals using accurate data sets.
Data annotation tools are a popular choice for project managers because they help prepare for new software builds. Data modelling software is another technology that many teams are adopting. It works by cleaning the client data before analysing it for the project scope.
Being able to provide clients with data visualisations at each stage of the project is another huge benefit. This means they can visually understand the process and offer their constructive feedback.
Focusing On Change Management
Segmented, regular delivery of software features to the client is the basis of agile methodologies. Because of this, several iterations of each project is a must. The COVID pandemic has left many businesses working just to stay afloat, so many clients will be seeking direction for their change management strategies going forward.
Agile project management encourages collaboration and flexibility already, so project managers naturally work in this way. Thanks to COVID, agile project managers will now be expected to go above and beyond the project’s parameters. This is so they can assist clients with looking at the bigger picture and their business intelligence.
With more of a focus on change management, projects will be able to better support the business infrastructure. The main focus for many organisations going forward is going to be how to recover and support their daily operations in a post-pandemic world.
Agile project managers will need to adapt the way they work with clients so they can meet their changing needs. They should act as a guide for clients regarding technologies that will help them maintain their new software.
Adopting Agile For A Post-Pandemic Future
Here at TSG Training, we are experts in agile project management and offer a wide selection of training courses. Whether you are a project manager with years of experience or new to the agile world, we have got a course for you.
Our training options are available as either online or classroom learning so that you can fit them around your daily commitments. Some of our most popular agile training courses are Agile Scrum Foundation eLearning, ISTQB Advanced Agile Technical Tester and an Introduction To Agile Testing.
Our agile training courses can help you navigate a post-COVID world and learn the essential skills you need to progress in your career. For more information and advice on our training courses, get in touch with our team.