Agile PM Process Grid–Types of Iterations

John Stenbeck in his book “PMI-ACP Exam Prep PLUS Desk Reference”, he creates an agile project management process grid with 87 processes divided into 5 process groups and 7 knowledge areas.

The block of processes I am covering now are those in the Planning process group and the “Value-Driven Delivery” knowledge area.   The first process is the creation of Release and Iteration Plans, and the second part of the process, creating Iteration Plans.   This post goes into the fact that not all iterations are created equal.

Standard Iteration

This is a single cycle of development with a fixed length that delivers new development work that has been subject to quality assurance and user acceptance testing.

Sometimes the standard iterations are preceded by a planning iteration called Iteration 0 (zero).

Iteration 0

This is use to perform foundational work for the project and usually lasts only one week.    This foundational work could include logistics, high-level analysis of options, and communicating with other departments or vendors.

Hardening Iteration

This is the iteration that is performed before the product is released and is used to complete all final acceptance testing.

Handoff Iteration

This is the iteration are used when formal or regulatory documentation must be prepared, particularly when deliverables are being submitted to an external agency such as OSHA or the FDA.

QA/Testing Iteration

This is an iteration that focuses on QA and testing (as the name implies) if these procedures cannot be done during the standard iterations.

Defect Repair Iteration

These iterations focus on fixing defects and bugs before new development work can continue.

Hybrid Iteration

These are standard iterations that reserve a percentage of development capacity for non-developmental work, such as bug fixing.   Such an iteration should be the exception to the rule, and used for unplanned emergencies.

In the next post, I will cover the next process in the process grid, 2.5 Planning Activities.



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