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Submitted Conference Content

Full name

Tathagat Varma

Job Head of Business Ops, OPD and Strategic Programs
email tathagat [dot] varma [at] gmail [dot] com
Phone number 9845200209
Company Yahoo!
City (Country) Bangalore
Time 1h
Type of Conference Conference > 100 attendees
Level Everybody

Software Agility - Necessary but not Sufficient!

Biography

Tathagat has been involved with hi-tech software product development over the last two decades with Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO), and subsequently with Siemens Telecom (now known as Nokia Siemens), Philips Medical Systems and Philips Digital Networks divisions, Huawei Technologies, McAfee and NetScout Systems prior to joining at Yahoo! in significant technical and leadership roles, including starting-up and heading India operations for NetScout Systems between 2004 and 2009. At Yahoo! India R&D, he is responsible for Strategic Programs, Outsourced Product Development and Business Operations. He also leads center-wide Agile adoption and Business Excellence programs. His core expertise is large-scale new product development, project management, strategic program management, software process improvement, agile software development, general management, leadership development, organizational change management, cultural transformation and outsourced product development. Tathagat volunteers with PMI (NPDSIG) and IEEE Technology Management Council and has been a visiting faculty on Project Management and Business Ethics courses. He has authored and presented multiple papers and talks at national and international conferences, and is a sought-after speaker in the industry on these topics. He also blogs on his views on strategy, leadership, execution and management of software development at http://www.managewell.net.

Description

Over the last fifty years, the art and science of software development has made rapid advances. While models like CMM and ISO in 90s enabled essentially large-scale systems development, the advent of agile methods starting 2001 brought about a democratization of project management and decision-making, along with the ability to deliver a sliver of functionality through short and rapid iterations. No doubt, this has led to much better control over software development through 'inspect and adapt' methods. However, in last two decades, software has become increasingly critical and synonymous with mission-critical business performance. It is no longer enough to simply iterate faster if such agility doesn't translate into tangible business performance. Some of the contemporary ideas include the notion of 'validated learning' from Eric Ries' 'Lean Startup', which is significantly different from the old-style 'learning', and must entail clear progress as opposed to a simply validation of a hypothesis that a sprint could offer. Similarly, while a backlog must consist of an ordered list of user stories based on some business value, most businesses and product owner struggle to clearly articulate and demonstrate the achieved business value at the end of an iteration. If no business value is achieved at the end of an iteration, and the total business value is only achieved at a release, I don't think we are still doing a waterfall at business level despite creating a high agility at software team level. The net result is that businesses fail to see how adoption of agile methods is really helping them. In this talk, we explore various aspect of agility at business level, and how agile must scale up and evolve to address such challenges in order to stay relevant at business level.

Prerequisites

This talk is meant for seasoned software professionals who can step away from established labels and rituals and critically explore the fundamental philosophy behind agility, and are willing to experiment in order for business to real agility.

Benefits for the attendees

Walk away with some provocative ideas to improve business agility

Go to the submission page!