Making Agile Work for Design

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This presentation, given at Refresh Boston, provides a short introduction to the Agile development process and reviews current design and UX practices. It examines whether Agile can work without hindering the creative process, highlighting the reasons why developers like Agile, the problems Agile poses for designers, and the ways teams can mitigate some of these issues. Lastly, the presentation reviews techniques integrated Agile development and design teams use, and evaluates which methods have worked and where they can be refined.

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Making Agile Work for Design

  1. Making Agile Work JONATHAN FOLLETT DAN PICKETT for Design REFRESH BOSTON APRIL 29, 2009
  2. OVERVIEW • The Design and Development Process Survey • A Quick Introduction to Agile Development • The User Experience Design Perspective • Problems in Design with Agile Development • Mitigation Strategies • What Agile Development Techniques Can Design Incorporate? • Can It Work? • A Proposed Process • Q&A
  3. ABOUT YOU • How many people here are developers? • How many are designers? • How many are managers/executives/other?
  4. WHY ARE WE OBSESSED WITH PROCESS?
  5. 43% OF OUR SURVEY RESPONDENTS FELT THERE WERE INEFFICIENCIES IN THEIR PROCESS
  6. 65% OF OUR SURVEY RESPONDENTS FELT THEY DID THEIR BEST WORK AS A RESULT OF THEIR CURRENT PROCESS
  7. THE SURVEY • Who did we survey? 93 designers and developers (and counting) • Professional Groups Refresh Boston, NEWDA, CHIFOO, UX Professionals Group • Participate survey.enlightsolutions.com
  8. SURVEY AUDIENCE BREAKDOWN BOTH DESIGNERS DEVELOPERS
  9. AGILE IN PRACTICE HAVE NEVER HEARD OF AGILE NOT USING USING AGILE AGILE
  10. A QUICK INTRODUCTION TO AGILE DEVELOPMENT
  11. THE STATE OF SOFTWARE PRE-AGILE • The Waterfall Method - Drawn out product lifecycle - Product failures without realizing any value - Lack of stakeholder feedback and involvement
  12. HISTORY OF AGILE • Snowbird, Utah in 2001 • Notable names like Kent Beck, Dave Thomas, Andy Hunt, Martin Fowler • Led to popular frameworks like XP, SCRUM
  13. THE AGILE MANIFESTO We are uncovering better ways of developing software by doing it and helping others do it.
  14. THE AGILE MANIFESTO Through this work we have come to value: Individuals and interactions over processes and tools Working software over comprehensive documentation Customer collaboration over contract negotiation Responding to change over following a plan That is, while there is value in the items on the right, we value the items on the left more.
  15. “Clients, users, developers, designers, etc. ... taking little steps together towards a larger goal, providing feedback, analyzing and making sure goals are being met at each step. ” - RACHEL DONOVAN
  16. THE AGILE DEVELOPMENT PROCESS Iterative - Release Early, Release Often
  17. THE AGILE DEVELOPMENT PROCESS Iterative - Release Early, Release Often Intense Stakeholder Involvement
  18. THE AGILE DEVELOPMENT PROCESS Iterative - Release Early, Release Often Intense Stakeholder Involvement Daily Standups
  19. THE AGILE DEVELOPMENT PROCESS Iterative - Release Early, Release Often Intense Stakeholder Involvement Daily Standups User Stories
  20. Mike Cohn User Stories Applied
  21. “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.” - CHARLES DARWIN
  22. USER EXPERIENCE DESIGN
  23. USER EXPERIENCE Spiral-like process of: Research Understanding Users and Their Goals Information Architecture Interaction Design Visual Design Usability
  24. PROBLEMS IN DESIGN WITH AGILE DEVELOPMENT
  25. UNCERTAINTY
  26. Timeboxing Creativity
  27. “The creative is the place where no one else has ever been. You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition.” - ALAN ALDA
  28. Ben Franklin’s Schedule
  29. Depth of Customer Involvement
  30. Predictability of Work Volume
  31. Volatile or Vague Requirements
  32. Maximized Performance with Senior Talent
  33. “If you don’t like change, you’re going to like irrelevance even less.” - GENERAL ERIC SHINSEKI
  34. MITIGATION STRATEGIES
  35. Frameworks, Technologies & Constraints
  36. Develop an Established, Shared Vision of the Users & the Product
  37. Rough Sketches & Concepts
  38. Bill Buxton Sketching User Experiences
  39. Have a Roadmap
  40. Design Ahead
  41. Flexible Layouts
  42. WHAT AGILE DEVELOPMENT TECHNIQUES CAN DESIGN INCORPORATE?
  43. AGILE DEVELOPMENT TECHNIQUES • Refactoring: How malleable is a design? Can it be altered again and again?
  44. AGILE DEVELOPMENT TECHNIQUES • Incremental Construction: Can a design build on itself?
  45. AGILE DEVELOPMENT TECHNIQUES • Acceptance Testing: Can you get upfront criteria from stakeholders to evaluate the success of implementation?
  46. AGILE DEVELOPMENT TECHNIQUES • Pair Design: This might mitigate the need for exclusively Senior designers.
  47. PROJECTS WELL SUITED FOR AGILE • Primarily senior, adaptable developers and designers • Loose upfront requirements • Committed and available stakeholders
  48. PROJECTS NOT WELL SUITED FOR AGILE • High concentrations of junior resources: Senior resources must identify batch work for the juniors to perform. • Offshore arrangements • Extremely strict requirements and quality standards • Split focus teams
  49. CAN IT WORK?
  50. Understand what the “Other Side” is doing.
  51. Familiarity vs. Specialization
  52. Mutual Respect for Each Others’ Craft
  53. HOW DO YOU DEVELOP A COHESIVE VISION?
  54. Johanna Rothman Manage It!
  55. A PROPOSED PROCESS
  56. GETTING REQUIREMENTS • Talented Creative and Engineering Resources: In the room with the stakeholder • Follow Brainstorming Basics • Reflect Shared Goals Through Deliverables - Rough Screen Sketches - Rough User Stories tied to screens
  57. SYNCHING UP THE DESIGN & DEV TEAMS • Cohesive Vision • Offset Design
  58. Q&A
  59. THANK YOU.
  60. GET IN TOUCH JON FOLLETT jonfollett@hotknifedesign.com twitter.com/jonfollett DAN PICKETT dpickett@enlightsolutions.com twitter.com/dpickett

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