Chapter 1: A Developer's Guide to Lean Software Development

November 1, 2009 — Posted by Jim Trott

Listen to the webinar audio Chapter 1: A Developer's Guide to Lean Software Development

This show continues a chapter by chapter discussion about the new book, Lean-Agile Software Development: Achieving Enterprise Agility, by Alan Shalloway, Guy Beaver, and Jim Trott. 

This show focuses on Chapter 1, A Developers Guide to Lean Software Development. We start to answer the question, if Lean's goal is to focus on speed, quality, and low cost. How do you do it?

In the past, the approach has been to try to make every step and every person as efficient as possible. That doesn't work. Instead, you have to look at optimizing the whole process. It is different than efficiency and cost; in fact, lowering cost can increase speed to market and lower quality.

Lean says the better approach is to focus on removing delays.

We want to focus on the time between the idea is conceived until the customer can consume it. This involves realizing that product development is a conversation between developers and customers to discover what is required. Customers don't always know what they need. As much as possible, you want your process to improve the learning and feedback that is taking place so that customers can focus on what they really need.

What is needed? Focus on removing delays, removing waste in the overall process. For example,

  • Get feedback from the customer quickly.
  • Write tests first. Then you immediately discover when bugs appear.
  • Detect integration issues quickly.

The bottomline is that We want to make value flow through the organization quickly and remove anything that causes delay.

Finally, practices change depending on the context. How do you know the practices you are doing are good? By comparing them with the foundation lean principles. Teams have both responsibility and guidance for their work. That is the perspective they need.

About Lean-Agile Software Development: Achieving Enterprise Agility

The motivation of this book is to create a bigger picture what teams transitioning to agile need to do. Yes, teams need to understand the mechanics of the approach to get working, but there is more. Management needs to understand how to help teams work together. Business leadership prioritizing the right things to be working on. And there is a need to ensure technical quality so that development can be done in a sustainable way.

We also want to introduce Lean and how it applies to the transition. We don't believe "scaling up" is a very effective approach. Rather, taking a more holistic view is needed to get success. That is how Lean thinking helps.

This is not a book for experienced practitioners but for those who are picking Agile, Scrum, or Lean for software development. We expect you do understand a bit about Agile but not anything about Lean.

For more information see the resource page for the book.

Recommendations

For more information, visit us at https://www.netobjectives.com/

Music used in this podcast is by Bill Cushman at http://ghostnotes.blogspot.com and Kevin McLeod: http://www.incompetech.com/. If you need music, I’d encourage you to subscribe to their feeds.

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About the author | Jim Trott

Jim Trott is a senior consultant for Net Objectives. He has used object-oriented and pattern-based analysis techniques throughout his 20 year career in knowledge management and knowledge engineering. He is the co-author of Design Patterns Explained: A New Perspective on Object-Oriented Design, Lean-Agile Software Development: Achieving Enterprise Agility, and the Lean-Agile Pocket Guide for Scrum Teams.



        

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Al Shalloway
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