To deliver agile outcomes, you have to do more than implement an agile process; you have to create a culture of experimentation. It's this commitment to experimenting that's at the heart of a high-functioning practice of agile. This course shows you how to integrate the practice of experimentation across concept/feature testing, usability testing, and testing the software itself.
Basically, you’ll learn how to answer these four big questions with experiments:
1. Should we build it?
2. Did it matter?
3. Is it usable?
4. Did it break?
More specifically, after completing this course, you’ll be able to:
- Identify where and how to invest your team’s scarce time and energy into better testing for maximum impact on outcomes
- Coach your team on the relationship between idea, usability, and software testing to get the buy-in you need for strong
- Test ideas before you build them to avoid waste and help your team focus on what will really drive outcomes
- Test alternative interface patterns before you build them to maximize both product usability and purposeful
As a Project Management Institute (PMI®) Registered Education Provider, the University of Virginia Darden School of Business has been approved by PMI to issue 20 professional development units (PDUs) for this course, which focuses on core competencies recognized by PMI. (Provider #2122)
This course is supported by the Batten Institute at UVA’s Darden School of Business. The Batten Institute’s mission is to improve the world through entrepreneurship and innovation: www.batteninstitute.org.
Should we build it? Did it matter? Nothing will help a team deliver better outcomes like making sure they’re building something the user values. This might sound simple or obvious, but I think after this module it’s likely you’ll find opportunities to help improve your team’s focus by testing ideas more definitively before you invest in developing software. In this module you’ll learn how to make concept testing an integral part of your culture of experimentation. We’ll continue to apply the Lean Startup methods you learned in Course 2 ‘Running Product Design Sprints’ (and/or you can review the tutorials in the Resources section). We’ll look at how high-functioning teams design and run situation-appropriate experiments to test ideas, and how that works before the fact (when you’re testing an idea) and after the fact (when you’re testing the value of software you’ve released).
Is it usable? The best products are tested for usability early and often, avoiding the destructive stress and uncertainty of a ‘big unveil’. In this module, you’ll learn how to diagnose, design and execute phase-appropriate user testing. The tools you’ll learn to use here (a test plan template, prototyping tool, and test session infrastructure) are accessible/teachable to anyone on your team. And that’s a very good thing- often products are released with poor usability because there ‘wasn’t enough time’ to test it. With these techniques, you’ll be able to test early and often, reinforcing your culture of experimentation.
Does it break? You’ve learned how to test ideas and usability to reduce the amount of software your team needs to build and to focus its execution.Now you’re going to learn how high-functioning teams approach testing of the software itself. The practice of continuous delivery and the closely related Devops movement are changing the way we build and release software. It wasn’t that long ago where 2-3 releases a year was considered standard. Large firms like Facebook now release new code multiple times per day. In this module, we’ll look at the delivery pipeline and step through what successful practitioners do at each stage and how you can diagnose and apply the practices that will improve your implementation of agile.