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Agile & Scrum Workshop: playfully experiencing the possibilities

TMC software Employeneurs Jos de Bel and Arnold Houwing are both experts in the field of Agile & Scrum software development. Recently, they went to Locamation, a company that has begun to develop their software using Scrum. Locamation produces measuring devices to accurately monitor the power and voltage on electricity networks. Scrum Master at Locamation, Michel Lammertink, asked TMC to organise an Agile & Scrum workshop for their software engineers, to give them a deeper understanding of what this method entails, how it can positively impact the way a team functions, and how it can improve results. We talked with Michel to ask him about the workshop and the implementation of Agile & Scrum at Locamation.

Agile consultancy day

Michel: “Before the workshop, Jos came by for a day to talk to several people within the company, to check what they wanted the workshop to achieve, to get a feel for the type of people working at our company, and to see what stage we were at in our implementation of Scrum. This consultancy day was also a great opportunity for a lot of people here to ask Jos questions. Agile & Scrum are new concepts for most of us, and although we are implementing it only in our software development department, it also, of course, affects other departments. So the day also enabled us to raise awareness and acceptance of the method throughout the company.”

Agile & Scrum Workshop

“The workshop itself was given by Jos and Arnold to about ten of our software engineers. The great thing about the workshop was that they organized it in the same way you organise a Scrum session. In the beginning the topics were defined and the whole group determined the sequence we would go through them, from the most important to the least important. It immediately opened up the discussion. ‘Ok, we start with that, but why?’ That’s the same way Scrum should work when developing software: ‘Ok, we are improving that part of the software first, but why?’ It immediately created a very open atmosphere and there was a lot of room for questions during the day.”

Folding hats and inflating balloons

“After we covered all the topics, we played a game where we were instructed to produce folded hats and inflated balloons. Everybody was given a role to play and told the requirements for the products. It was a great way to show how Agile works, and how good questions can lead to improvements and better results very fast. The Workshop showed everybody what Agile & Scrum can achieve and increased their acceptance of the method. Everybody experienced the possibilities it offers. The great thing about TMC is that along with their knowledge, they also have great experience in implementing Agile at other companies. When we come across a problem, they can tell us about solutions that other companies have tried and what their results were. That experience is a great help when we are finding our own way.”

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