This post is from jimhighsmith.com by Jim Highsmith.
As I talk with companies around the world it’s clear that a significant number of them are still mired in the productivity, efficiency, and optimization mud. It’s easy to spot them because they are often maniacal about measuring velocity—team velocity, velocity across teams, rolling up velocity to an organizational level or even velocity per developer (yuck). Velocity is thereby killing agility. It’s the ultimate in applying a reasonable tool for the wrong reasons:
- Velocity is increasingly being used as a productivity measure (not the capacity calibration measure that it was intended to be) that focuses too much attention on the volume of story points delivered.
- Focusing on volume detracts from the quality of the customer experience delivered and investing enough in the delivery engine (technical quality).
- Giving the product owner/manager complete priority control makes the problem worse—we have gone from customer focus to customer control that further skews the balance of investing in new features versus the delivery engine.
- Particularly for those parts of the business for which high responsiveness (a deployment cycle time of days or weeks) is critical, investment in the delivery engine is as critical as investing in new features.
- Management needs to allocate resources between features and engine work and then create a product ownership team consisting of the product owner and technical leader to do feature prioritization.
- Value (value points) and cycle time metrics will help balance the detrimental effects of velocity measures.
Click here to see the full post.