Archive for category Telstra Contact Solutions CCRI Team

Follow the dots: the simplest way to track cycle time


This team wanted to track cycle time, and chose to do this by simply putting a dot on each card every day at standup. This way, you can count the dots on each card in the “done” pile at the end of the iteration (or any time), and understand average cycle time per card, or by point-size.

Cycle time for the story below is 6 days.

But this team took it a step further, colour-coding the dots by number of days in each process step. So, the card below spent 2 days in the backlog (green dots), then 3 days in build (red), and 2 days in test (black).

“Some of the cards had dots going all around the edge of the card!” says Gina. And sometimes the stories bounced back and forth between build and test (you would see this as alternating runs of red and black). Great fodder for retro.

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Spotted: Telstra Contact Solutions, CCRI

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Standup Heat Map


Following on from the retro heat map, how about a standup heat map?

David Colls realised that his standup had become 2 separate conversations: the team’s shared conversation at standup had been lost.  So he made a map of who spoke to whom at standup to show what was really going on. With the team currently working on 2 pieces of work which were not directly related to each other the dialogue was fragmenting. A good topic for retro?

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Are We Gonna Make it?


Here’s a tool for teams doing commitment – based planning.

On this chart there is  confidence slider per day of the iteration. Team members individually mark their confidence that the team’s commitment will be reached on the chart after standup, with a line.  On the left of the scale is “Very scared that we will not achieve everything we have committed to this iteration”. On the other: “Very confident that we will deliver everything that we have committed to by the end of this iteration.”

This one makes an excellent conversation starter. “Why do you feel that we will / wont make the goal?” The answers may well reveal risks which may have remained hidden.   Different teams will display different patterns. For some, they become more confident as the iteration progresses. For others, you will see the cloud of marks moving back to the left.

Below you can see the clusters of lines, and you can see outliers: skeptics, or optimists. Graeme, the Iteration Manager, says: “For stakeholders, or other interested people, they can see how the team feels about a commitment.” That’s hard to argue with. “I like it better than a burndown chart.”

It certainly looks like a better form of reporting than the standard RAG Sheet.

Look below: this iteration, the team have divided on the fourth day in, with at least three team members strongly convinced the goal is out of reach. What happened on Wednesday? A great conversation starter.

Spotted: Telstra  Contact Solutions CCRI team, Graeme Robb.

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