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Wednesday, August 5 • 14:45 - 15:15
Organization and Business Agility: Managing the Portfolio Backlog in Large Organizations (Ken Power) POPULAR

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Working in a multi-team, multi-program, multi-product environment brings several challenges. One of those is providing a smooth flow of work to teams, and incorporating their feedback, while staying responsive to the needs of the business in a changing environment. This Experience Report documents several years’ experience working in such environments. The focus of this Experience Report is specifically on managing the portfolio backlog, not the full scope of what could be considered under a portfolio management strategy and implementation. We have found that getting the portfolio backlog management strategy right is a key element in the success of the overall portfolio management approach.
It sounds like it should be straightforward: create a list of all the work the organization has to do, get the right people together, prioritize the work, make changes as needed. The reality proves to be far from obvious. The attempt to provide a portfolio backlog approach brings the organization’s agility into sharp focus. Those business units that make it work effectively find that having an approach for managing the portfolio of work contributes to overall organization responsiveness.
This Experience Report will share several lessons learned, and highlight some pitfalls to avoid, when designing your own portfolio backlog management approach.
Learning Outcomes:
  • Challenges and lessons drawn from several years of implementing portfolio backlog management approaches in multiple business units
  • Definitions that we use
  • Useful practices
  • Value of portfolio management
  • Relationship between managing the portfolio backlog, and the work done by teams
  • Relationship between product managers and product owners
  • Metrics
  • Visibility and transparency
  • Flow of work
  • Explicit investment in different area: features, capabilities, architecture and more
  • Rolling roadmaps, and how to communicate the portfolio to customers
  • The role of continuous planning
  • The portfolio backlog management meeting
  • The portfolio leadership team
  • Collaborating with customers and other stakeholders

avatar for Ken Power

Ken Power

Principal Engineer, Cisco Systems, Inc.
Ken is a Principal Engineer and internal coach and consultant with Cisco Systems, Inc. He lives in Galway, Ireland and works with teams and organizations around the world. His responsibilities include leading the agile transformation for Ciscos largest software group. He also works with universities and research groups in agile, lean and software engineering research. He is currently completing a PhD in Lean Flow and understanding impediments... Read More →

Wednesday August 5, 2015 14:45 - 15:15
Potomac 4