Agile Methodology for project management

Posted on Thursday, August 30, 2018

In the last few months, the Student Experience team within Information Technology has been integrating the Agile approach to manage projects. The Coop Navigator was used as a pilot for this transition.

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Compared to the Waterfall methodology used until recently, Agile presents more benefits in terms of communication and transparency. With the Waterfall approach, the client was involved at the beginning of the process to define the issue, and at the very end for user testing and sign-off. A challenge presented by this approach is the digression between the solution envisioned by the client and the developed solution.

The Agile Methodology provides transparency on the progress made, which is communicated during the so-called “sprint reviews”. These are meetings held at the end of each development unit to look at the solution cycle. They provide the client a forum to review the progress and offer their feedback.

The implementation of this methodology has its challenges due to the learning curve for new tools (i.e., Atlassian’s Jira and Confluence), new processes, and a required culture change. Before launching this pilot, the project team participated in the other teams’ agile-based processes. They worked together to learn from their successes and errors. Team members also benefited from online training to support them in this change of methodology. Going forward, the processes will continue to evolve as the team adjusts after each sprint to become more effective and efficient.

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