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Agile methodology is an approach to project management that prioritizes flexibility and collaboration in order to achieve rapid, incremental progress. It provides a structure for teams to plan, execute, and evaluate their work in iterative cycles with frequent feedback.
Agile is most commonly used by software engineering teams because it allows them to adapt to constantly changing priorities and requirements. The flexibility that Agile offers makes it easy to adapt to the most important customer or stakeholder needs and solve problems early.
However, Agile’s principles are not unique to software development. Other types of teams such as marketing and finance can use Agile methodology to deliver work quickly and efficiently. Any team that faces constant change and a high level of required communication can use Agile to be better prepared to deliver results faster and more effectively.
Within Agile methodology, there are several different frameworks that teams might follow. Although every type of Agile follows the same principles of fluidity, collaboration, and continuous improvement, the details of how it is executed may look very different. There are different ceremonies that go along with each one, so choose the one that best fits your team’s working style and goals.
Scrum is an Agile framework defined by short periods of time called “sprints.” The goals for each sprint are clearly defined beforehand and then reviewed afterwards. This type of Agile is perfect for a team with rapidly changing requirements, a preference for clearly defined roles and structures, and the ability to meet frequently — either in person or virtually.
In the Scrum framework, work is organized and visualized with a Scrum board, a visual tool that shows the progress of tasks as they move through the process. Scrum boards are a key element of many Agile ceremonies used by Scrum teams.
Scrum Board Templates
Kanban is a less structured way to approach Agile work. Rather than defined sprints of time, the Kanban method uses a pull system where team members pull a new task from the backlog upon finishing their current task. Kanban is all about managing the amount of work happening at once, so the team isn’t overloaded and can finish their current tasks as quickly as possible.
Kanban is best for teams that prefer a less structured approach with fewer defined roles and meetings. Work is organized and visualized with a Kanban board, which shows both the backlog and the status of ongoing tasks and keeps the team aligned anywhere, anytime.
Kanban Board Templates
Although frameworks like Scrum and Kanban exist with the intent to provide structure that helps teams succeed with Agile work, you don’t have to follow one framework strictly. Do what’s best for your team’s working style, even if that means combining some elements of Scrum, Kanban, or even other Agile frameworks.
These retrospective templates can be used by Scrum, Kanban, or any other type of Agile team and provide a helpful structure to reflect on and learn from your work.
Agile ceremonies are meetings held at defined intervals and with specific structures and purposes to help the team stay aligned and on track with their goals. Retrospectives, sprint reviews, and sprint planning meetings are just a few examples of Agile ceremonies.
First, in order to have effective Agile ceremonies, you need to define the roles that your team will play. This is especially important in the Scrum framework, which requires certain members of the team to take roles such as Scrum Master and product owner.
In Kanban, roles are less important, but you might assign a Service Delivery Manager and Service Request Manager to handle the backlog and workflow.
Second, you need to determine what your team’s ceremonies will be and how often you will have them. Which ceremonies are most important to your team’s growth and most helpful for reaching your goals?
There are many Agile ceremonies to choose from, so make sure you’re focusing on the ones that are most relevant to your goals for practicing the agile methodology. Regardless of what you choose, defining your team’s practices and traditions is one of the top 5 best practices for team productivity — check out our team productivity blog to see more of them!
How to Improve Team Productivity
Once you’ve defined your team’s roles and ceremonies, you’ll need to decide how you will execute them. Will you meet in person or on a video call? What collaboration tools will you use to record your thoughts? Unless you’re meeting in person and taking notes on paper, you will need some kind of groupware to have your Agile ceremonies.
Groupware encapsulates any kind of software that helps teams collaborate, from messaging and conferencing to visualization and information management. This groupware blog has more examples as well as how to decide which groupware tools are the best fit for your team.
Learn About Groupware
Since Agile ceremonies are live meetings, you will need a way to collaborate in real time even if your team is physically separated. With Gliffy, your team can work together during your Agile ceremonies to build and develop Scrum boards, Kanban boards, or anything else you need to manage work — without ever leaving Confluence.
Collaboration Tutorial How to Use Gliffy as a Team
In order to use the Agile ceremonies templates linked above, you’ll need to know how to find and use templates in Gliffy for Confluence. This quick tutorial will show you how.
Using Templates in Gliffy
Some of the features you might run into during your Agile ceremonies are Sticky Notes, which you can place onto a Scrum, Kanban, or retrospective board to represent tasks or ideas, and freehand drawing, which can help you mark ideas or sketch something out. Check out these tutorials to see these features in action.
Sticky Notes Freehand Drawing
With a few templates and how-tos, you’re ready to get started on your Agile journey! Try Gliffy for Confluence to help your team manage and organize your work, and you’ll be all set to deliver great results faster than ever.