Webinar On The Release Planning – A Detailed Study In The Release Planning!

April 16, 2013
Saket Bansal
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  • Agile
  • Scrum
  • webinar
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Scrum guide doesn’t actually cover release planning as a part of scrum ceremonies. This backfires, and most of the PMI-ACP® certification aspirants are left stranded in the middle of nowhere. It really gets difficult for them to find out the right answers to their questions pertaining to release planning and monitoring.

Keeping this issue in mind we held a webinar on release planning and release monitoring to resolve your qualms related to these two important topics.

We followed the simplistic pattern for addressing concerned issues by beginning with why, what, when, who, and how.

The main agenda of the webinar was to clear the concepts of release planning in the minds of our participating members. We begin by stating why we do the release plan and smoothly transitioned to the phase of what do we do in the release planning and who plays what roles in the entire process.

We focussed and spent good time discussing on how release planning is done. The topic received an overwhelming response from all of the attendees. Almost everybody participating in the webinar had something to say – This made our webinar one of the most interactive session. This is what encourages us to bring forth more interesting and interactive webinars. We are completely devoted to people, professionals and students alike to select the next issue to be covered in the webinars.

Our webinars are not mere monotonous speech of the speaker; it is also an interactive amalgamation of ideas, and quizzes to test your acumen. We have this specially devised pre-webinar quiz to develop a background of the webinar to be attended.

Now, I have some view points to share on the quiz questions. This will let you have a clear picture of the release planning and issues that needs to be delved into for mastering the art.

Pre-Webinar Quiz

Q 1: What is a typical duration of releases in agile projects?

My View: 3 Months to 12 months, it’s usually more than 3 months and less than a year. However, some teams do releases in shorter durations too. But for exam, better to image a duration of more than 3 months while answering questions related to release planning.

Q2: How many sprints in one release team should have, for new product development projects?

My View:Now there is no mandate , but yes it’s better to have five or more iterations in one release since this gives a better opportunity to adapt, we can do mid iteration reviews but iteration end reviews are better.

Q3: Who all participates in release planning?

My View: All including Customer, Sponsor, Stakeholders, Product Owner, Scrum Master & Team participates in the release planning. Unlike other scrum ceremonies you do not get rules for release planning in scrum guide.

Q4: Does the release plan change during the release duration?

My View: Yes, agile is about responding to change and adaptation.

Q5: Which of the following is not an input for the release planning?

My View: Velocity, Product Backlog, Project length / release length are inputs to the release planning. But the story level Acceptance Test Cases are not expected to be ready at the time of release planning, since we do things at the last responsible movement.

Q6: In which phase the release planning is done first time?

My View: APM (Agile Project Management) framework has five phases, Envision, Speculate, explore, adapt, and close. And, the phase that contributes to planning is ‘speculation’ since it has a higher level of uncertainty.

Q7: Do we play planning poker in the release planning meeting?

My View: It’s better to estimate the stories which have probability of getting selected for the release before the release meeting, since doing estimation also in meeting can make the meeting long. Also, all the participants (stakeholders, business reps) will not be contributing in estimation so this says why we need to do this prior the release planning. However, as a matter of fact team will invariably end up doing some estimations during release planning since stories may get desegregated during the release planning, but for that team we just do affinity based estimation. Now that you have a view of questions that I pre-designed for my participants so let’s have a sneak into the queries, doubts you may call from my participants.

  • 1. Is release planning meeting impacts financial side of the project?
  • 2. What are the Minimum requirements which needs to be set for a project release based on Agile Methodology
  • 3. Does the Risk Plan consider as one of the Artefacts in Agile as for instance continuous Scope Creep lead to Final Release even though there is customer buy-in?
  • 4. Can Condition of Satisfaction be considered as Acceptance Criteria?
  • 5. If requirements/specifications keep on changing, then modification in Test cases will result in too. How much this will affect the Project Estimation in the end?
  • 6. Who all should be present in release planning?
  • 7. Is the condition of satisfaction is same as definition of work done?
  • 8. So it is ok to change and modify user stories to the release in between?
  • 9. What happens if your stakeholders are not available locally for a release planning meeting?
  • 10. Who should drive the release planning meeting? Is it Scrum Master?
  • 11. What do we do if Release plan objective has dependence on the other release objective?
  • 12. What is the role of Scrum Master in Release Planning?
  • 13. What is the Golden Rule for \”Agile Release Planning”?
  • 14. If requirements are changing on a regular basis, how much this will impact the entire process?
  • 15. What are the Key Drivers for Release & Sprint Planning?
  • 16. What is the best way to track the changes occurs during different Iterations?

For a detailed background of the above questions and correct answers for the same, tune into the YouTube video of this webinar @ http://www.youtube.com/embed/n1g-o1l5ZiA

The webinar has been an enjoyable and engaging experience for me! How about you? Do let us know! Drop us an appreciating note or your queries or even your feedbacks. We would love to bring interesting and worthy changes and cover new topics on your demand.