Project Management

Disciplined Agile 5.3 Released

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This blog contains details about various aspects of PMI's Disciplined Agile (DA) tool kit, including new and upcoming topics.

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Categories: agile, Disciplined Agile

Disciplined Agile LogoWe released Disciplined Agile (DA) v5.3 earlier today, September 30th 2021.  While there are several visible changes that we've made, discussed below, most of this release is "behind the scenes" in that we've updated descriptions of many techniques and added many new references that link to articles, blogs, or books describing a given technique.

The "visible changes" include updates to several process goals:

  • Intake Work. We refactored out several options from the Manage Work Items decision point to introduce a new decision point, Manage Backlog. We also updated the options for backlog management to reflect current industry practice.  This is a fairly important change that will be described in a detailed blog post.
  • Explore Scope. We updated the Choose a Backlog Management Strategy decision point to reflect changes to Intake Work. Early in a project it's critical to identify how you will manage your backlog later during Construction as this decision will inform your decision around how much detail to gather during Inception.
  • Measure Outcomes. We added several new potential metrics to existing options, and introduced the Increase Initiative Health decision point.
  • Organize Metrics. Added Aggregate Measures and Report Measures decision points.  An earlier blog, Apply Consistent Metrics Categories Across an Agile Portfolio, covers the key strategy for aggregating measures.  The report measures decision point is self explanatory, covering strategies such as status reports, metrics reports, automated dashboards, and more. 
  • Plan The Release. Updated estimation strategies.

We also updated the following process blades:

  • Continuous Improvement – Added the Analyze Root Cause decision point to the goal diagram.
  • Product Management – Added the Measure Offering decision point to describe explicit measurement options. Added the Capture Roadmap decision point to describe options for documenting/communicating your product roadmap.

It is important to note that for the DASM and DASSM exams that we are still testing you against the DA 5.0 version of the model.

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Posted by Scott Ambler on: September 30, 2021 06:59 AM | Permalink

Comments (9)

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Scott -

Thanks for the update! FYI - the Product Management link above leads to the Governance process blade rather than the PM one.

By the way, for the process blades outside of DAD which have evolved since the Executive Guide was released, where would we go to see the trade-offs and details about the options?


Thanks Scott - Another version of the guide to purchase :-)

@Kiron, good catch on the Product Management link. I've updated it. As far as publishing the other blades, all of the material that appeared in the Exec guide describing the blades is pretty much on Updated versions of the material of course, plus more since the guide was published.

We hope to start including details behind the blades in the DA browser in future releases. I'm in a planning session for that very thing next week in fact.

@Rami, no. The 5.3 release has been deployed into the DA browser, and appropriate changes to pages on, free of charge. The link to the browser page is .

Having said that, we are going to publish an update to Choose Your WoW! in January.

Enjoy the continuous improvement and updates to DA.

Suggestion: Include a link to this article on the DA Browser webpage, unless there is another official page that summarizes the updates.

Good to know, thanks Scott. Cheers !

@Daniel, the official release notes page is

I like your idea of linking to it from the DA Browser page. We'll get that done.


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