Project Management

Risk Management in Agile Projects

Ramkumar is an experienced program manager with12+ years of success in leading all phases of diverse technology IT projects in retail, e-commerce, insurance and pharma market research industries.

Agile projects involve a lot of uncertainties, including constantly changing requirements and customer expectations though the project lifecycle. Identifying the right user stories with risks and priorities from the backlog is vital for product launch (minimum viable product). Agile encourages emergent design, so constant technical expertise and engineering practices are the need of the hour.

Unlike traditional structured teams, cross-functional teams will pose challenges due to cultural and language differences. Team dynamics will be different for co-located and distributed teams. Establishing relationships and increasing the morale of the team through servant leadership is essential to success. Lastly, meeting customer expectations defines project success—so engaging the right customers for storyboarding and product evaluation is crucial.
Let’s look at the risk elements in some of the core facets of agile projects and how to manage them effectively…

1. Product backlog: The product backlog is usually stacked with epics, themes and user stories on order based on the domain knowledge by product owner. As the epics and themes evolve, they must be labelled with risk priority numbers. The risks associated with the user stories must be identified, and high-risk user stories must be prioritized in the product backlog.

Implementing such high-risk items …

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