Focus on end products instead of thinking in terms of projects
A company will often have a large number of projects underway. Having a large number of projects creates some tough challenges, particularly when it comes to efficiency. Your aim is to deploy employees correctly and align resources to current and future activities, gain insight into strategic added value, and proactively manage the project portfolio.
In the classic vision, a project portfolio is the hard facts about what a (development) team will do in the coming period. This can be seen as a kind of one-way communication.
With an agile approach, a portfolio is regarded as a set of possibilities and options around which a constant dialog takes place. The focus remains on the end product, which means the project is never an objective in itself and there is a continuous trade-off process in order to keep an eye on the business value.
Use a portfolio as a guide with options and opportunities
An end-to-end flow starts with discovering (capturing and understanding) and specifying (high-level analysis and synthesis). The start is initiated by triggers: business issues that we want to solve, end-user needs, things that we want to market or expand further. We look at potential risks in the areas of business, technology, skills & knowledge that we need, as well as cost and timing. What can we do, what do we need to do, what budget can we spend, and what skills do we need for this? We generate feasible business ideas in the form of hypotheses. The result is a list of concrete options, from both a business perspective and a technical perspective. This includes testability, releasability, operability, security, etc. The options and associated requirements are worked out in detailed user stories, so that the product team can start working with them immediately. More about this in the next blog in this series.