Embracing agile development means making a complete and utter switch in everything you do, including within your planning tools. Agile planning tools work better with your system than older tools not built for it, helping your team to be flexible and creative while still sticking to deadlines and budgets.
Part of the reason agile resonates with so many people is because it isn’t quite as structured and inflexible as other methodologies. Instead, it allows for flexible schedules and improvisation.
Agile planning tools maintain that flexibility while still providing the scaffolding you need to be successful. The best tools allow you to keep track of projects, making it easier for you to create goals, objectives, and future plans.
Right now, the market is saturated with agile planning tools. Some of the tools are designed for different forms of development, including central management, flexible management, and team-based planning. Other agile planning tools are built for nurturing and self-development.
These planning tools support your project by helping each member of the team identify the requirements of a project and then splitting the job into short cycles that lead up to the final result. Even better, some planning tools leave room for breaks where the team can meet and readjust, if necessary.
One common feature to look for in an agile planning tool is a dashboard that is easy to visualize and interact with, no matter which member of the team you are. The best dashboards update regularly as changes are made within the system.
Another important feature that your agile planning tool needs is a communication system. Discussion is an important part of the agile method, allowing team members to work together seamlessly.
Agile planning tools organize and guide your team throughout a project. In the early stages, it can provide a bit more guidance or have more information so that everyone stays on track. Then, as the team starts progressing at different speeds and accomplishing things regularly, the information adjusts for each person.
Planning tools don’t only stop working when you start the project – the planning continues. Agile planning tools plan entire projects, the next day, the next week, the next month, the next quarter, and more. All of the progress your team makes helps with the planning, but the failures help even more.
The best agile planning tools will work with a majority of other tools to complete the cycles.
Collaboration is one of the most difficult aspects of working with a team. It feels natural that one person takes charge while the rest fall in line, but an effective team will be self-managing. Agile planning tools offer a comfortable space for everyone to share input. Some of the tools here include calendars, message boards, trackers, and documentation.
These types of agile planning tools work best for those who have remote teams or need to work through a cloud service.
Agile trackers are pretty straightforward: they list the tasks that need to be complete, typically as stories. This way, team members are able to see what other people have to do, rank the tasks based on complexity, and see where they may need to collaborate.
Agile planning trackers are typically whiteboard tools that allow for discussion, monitoring, tracking, status updates, and more.
There are so many other agile planning tools on the market, including ones that track multiple teams as they work together, ones that keep customers in the loop about updates, time trackers, code storage, bug tracking, and more.
To find out more about how you can audit your agile tracking, agile tools, and entire system, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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