Determining quality criteria
Quality is measurable and a verifiable element of a project that reflects its value, usability and reliability. To keep quality high in an agile project, you must define clear quality criteria. This criterion should meet the expectations of the customer and meet the requirements of the project goals and the industry standards. Project managers should discuss this criterion within the business and associated stakeholders, using them to support further testing, reviewing and feedback.
Prioritising the key requirements of the project
Change is inevitable within an agile project, but not all changes have the same priority level. To maintain deadlines within an agile project, you must prioritise the requirements based on value, risk and dependency. This way, the project manager can focus on delivering the most critical and feasible parts.
Implement realistic plans
Planning and estimating are still critical in an agile project, even though they’re more flexible than a traditional project. To keep quality and deadlines in an agile project, you must plan and estimate realistically based on capacity and availability. Any plan and estimates should highlight progress and any feedback communicated to the team and stakeholders.
Testing and integrating consistently
Testing and integration shouldn’t be considered the final elements of an agile project. They are ongoing and critical parts that ensure the overall quality and functionality of a product. To maintain quality and deadlines, the project must be tested and integrated consistently throughout the entire development cycle. Applying tools like automated testing can help detect errors and defects earlier, reducing the overall time and effort associated with testing and integration.
Collaborating and communicating
Collaboration and communication are core aspects of agile project management. Both generate trust, transparency and alignment with a team, your customers and stakeholders. To keep quality and deadlines in an agile project, you must collaborate with all people participating in the project.
Learning and improving consistently
Learning and improvement are critical outcomes of agile project management. They create value, raise quality and strengthen your team’s capabilities, knowledge and performance. We must learn and improve from experiences and results to maintain quality and deadlines in an agile project.
Consistently learning and improving is inevitable in agile project management. Every project is unique, and we must build on our knowledge from other projects. The knowledge discovered in projects enables people to continue learning and improve. At the end of a project, we may have experienced lessons which emphasise learning for the future.
One of the core elements of Agile is that decisions are typically made by those closest to the work. Collaboration and communication are vital, but equally important, empowering the team to make essential decisions, technical plans, and ones associated with requirement and prioritisation.
The role of the Scrum Master is to ensure that a team is organised and capable of making these decisions. Taking this approach will enhance the development process and strengthen morale and overall ownership.
Before prioritising the work, you must determine and prioritise focus on the problem or opportunity that the business aims to address. In other words, what the project manager hopes will be achieved as a consequence of what is delivered.
Agile is about helping a business find the way to the best solution. These ideas will inevitably change, and the team associated with the project should be prepared to adapt, but the outcomes and what you’re trying to achieve must remain clear.