How To Choose Quality Candidates/Consultants for Your Large Company Agile Initiative

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your overall project management structure.

12. What does project velocity mean?

This is a project manager question, but most Agile practitioners should know the answer. Project velocity is the rate at which a team is "burning" through story points, so a possible velocity might be "30 story points per iteration." That means that so far, the team has been able to identify, code and test 30 units of functionality (story points) in an average iteration and can expect to do about that much in future iterations, giving a fairly good view towards what can be accomplished by a release date.

Use these questions when interviewing people for specific roles on your Agile projects, or especially for those you are considering to bring in as Agile coaches or mentors. You want to have a very clear idea that the coach's ideas will mesh well with the structures that you have in place in your large organization. Unfortunately, there are Agile coaches who feel that the external environment doesn't play a factor in their mentorship of your teams. As you can tell, we disagree. Agile can work in a large company, but it has to be tailored and even compromised to fit the realities that you face when setting up and executing projects.

Hopefully, these twelve questions can be a good start for your qualification process in bringing in new Agile consultants or candidate employees. Our hope is that you can build a highly-qualified team that will fit in well with your corporate development process, culture and PM standards.

References

Our work is based on the research paper by Dr. Hong Li. 

Here is some good reading on Agile in the enterprise:

Augustine, S. - Managing Agile Projects (Prentice Hall PTR, 2005), 264p

Highsmith, J. - Agile Project Management (Addison-Wesley, 2004), 312p

Leffingwell, D. - Scaling Software Agility (Addison-Wesley, 2007), 384p

Possible related articles and blogs of interest:

LitheSpeed Blog lithespeed.blogspot.com

The Agile Executive trailridgeconsulting.com/blog

Leading Answers leadinganswers.typepad.com

Scaling Software Agility scalingsoftwareagility.wordpress.com


About the Authors
Anita Shankar is a consultant with Perficient, Inc (htttp:// www.perficient.com), a NASDAQ-listed IT consulting firm. She is currently enjoying an assignment consulting for an international consumer goods company and working on her next article. Anita is based in Columbus, Ohio and can be contacted at anita.shankar@perficient.com.

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