Remote PI Planning: Day Three and Post-PI Planning

May 15, 2020 Digital.ai Team

As part of our commitment to help Agile teams seamlessly transition to remote PI Planning, we recently published a thorough Enterprise Guide to PI Planning along with two blog posts on Pre-PI Planning and Day One and Two of Remote PI Planning. We hope this information provides the clear guidance your organization needs to quickly adapt to changing circumstances and amplify team engagement with creative tactics and techniques during remote PI Planning, more so than in-person events. Not only is remote PI Planning a significant cost and time-saver for your organization, but it is also prepares you for the inevitable - Agile teams will continue to become more and more distributed and remote PI Planning may become the new normal going forward.

In this last installment of our remote PI Planning blog series, we will explain activities during day three of remote PI Planning and how to effectively conclude your event with retrospection during Post-PI Planning. Whether you are a beginner or veteran when it comes to remote PI Planning, check out Best Practices for Remote PI Planning to learn best practices and recommendations from our Agile experts who have helped customers across industries strategize and execute remote PI Planning in today’s work-from-home era.

Day Three of PI Planning

Final Plan Review and Lunch: In this meeting, all teams present their revised plans to the broader group for feedback. At the end of the presentation, teams provide their risks and impediments to the RTE, so they can be ROAMed. If business owners have concerns about the plans, teams will need to refine their plans and make the necessary adjustments. Updated plans are then presented again to business owners.

Program Risks: During this meeting, the risks and impediments identified by the teams are discussed with the whole ART. Risks are documented in VersionOne as issues of type “Risk” and associated with specific work items for better tracking. They are addressed and categorized in one of the following categories:

  • Resolved: Teams agree that the risk is no longer a concern

  • Owned: One person is assigned the risk since it could not be resolved during PI Planning

  • Accepted: The risk cannot be resolved so it is accepted for what it is

  • Mitigated: Teams identify a plan to reduce the impact of risk

Confidence Vote: Once program risks have been addressed, teams vote on their confidence in meeting their team PI objectives. This is a fist of five vote. The team members will hold up their hands with one to five fingers. Anything less than a three-finger vote will need to be addressed. The team member that has concerns will need to explain the issue so that it can be addressed by the teams. If the issue is resolved, the objective is voted on again to reach a confidence vote for the coming PI. In the event the issue could not be resolved, teams will need to rework their plans until a high confidence level can be reached. One way to streamline this process during remote PI Planning is by using the polling feature in your video conferencing tool so everyone in the ART can cast their vote from 1-5.

Planning Retrospective: Finally, the RTE leads a quick retrospective on the PI Planning event to gather feedback on what went well, what did not, and what can be done better next time. You can use VersionOne to run the retrospective by documenting the agenda, issues that come up, actions, and resulting user stories all in one place.

Post-PI Planning

The RTE and other ART stakeholders summarize the individual team PI objectives into a set of Program PI objectives that are SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound) and have business value assigned to them by business owners. Product Management uses the Program PI objectives to update the product/solution roadmap with delivery dates and improve the forecast for the next two PIs. They will also make final adjustments to the dependencies and delivery dates visible on the program board for the upcoming PI.

VersionOne provides a variety of reports and mechanisms for stakeholders to track and visualize the progress of Program Increments. Kanban Boards show the flow of work in-progress at the portfolio, program, and team level. Use the Feature Completion report to visualize which features are on track or behind schedule based on plan. Scorecards on the PI Planning level and the features planned in the PI provide useful information radiators of progress against plan. Visualize the percentage of business value delivered by each team in the ART during a specific PI using the Program Predictability report. Also, we recommend using VersionOne communities to create an Agile Center of Excellence where best practices and learnings can be shared and discussed.

Conclusion

One important thing to consider apart from tools for your first one or two remote PI events is to engage an expert to help you set up and navigate one or two events. Digital.ai, formerly CollabNet VersionOne, helps you and your teams prepare for the SAFe® PI Planning event, execute planning, capture planning outputs, and turn planning outputs into action. Engage our Agile coaches to help you navigate your first virtual PI planning session with VersionOne.

Let’s continue the conversation in our webinar on May 19th where you can ask your most pressing questions about remote PI Planning and gain further clarity on how you can conduct your most effective and engaging PI Planning event yet.

About the Author

Digital.ai Team

Read articles and blog posts about the latest in the industry by the Digital.ai team at Digital.ai.

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