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Agile Processes Means Construct Carries On Through COVID-19

By Meg Knight |


By having moved to an agile delivery methodology, with a globally dispersed workforce and clients, Construct is able to continue with our world-class online learning delivery, with external factors beyond our control having minimal impact on us.


We make full use of tools which enable us to collaborate both synchronously and asynchronously without individuals losing momentum or feeling overwhelmed.


In order to achieve this seamless integration, we have mastered the technological tools that are available :


Trello

  • Once a course is approved, we set up a Trello for the agile team

  • Each area of development has a specific color (production, learning, project management and technology)

  • Daily standups are done virtually, with the Trello board shared and individual tickets discussed, tracked and moved along


Example Construct Project Trello Board

Slack

  • Course-specific agile teams are joined in a slack channel

  • All detailed, project-level communication happens here

  • This allows for asynchronous communications, regardless of time zone challenges

  • Colleagues who have been off-line can quickly catch up, and take the ball further, facilitating a 24-hour model


Zoom

  • No matter where in the world the agile team is, they connect via Zoom

  • Daily standups bring people together for very short, sharp face-to-face sessions, which keep morale and motivation up

  • Shared screens enable shared understanding and quicker decision-making


Zoom Meeting | Construct Cape Town Team

Google Suite

  • Shared documents, asynchronous commenting and tagging of teammates keeps people on track, and not duplicating work efforts


Parabol

  • Once the sprint is finished, the project manager sets up a Retro, using the tool Parabol

  • Asynchronously, each team member comments on various aspects of the course, what they liked, would like to lose, and would like to adapt/iterate on


Additionally, with our well-tested processes and technologies, we are able to provide rapid response assistance to those who need it. Agile teams regroup around short and fast delivery needs, and use our experience to guide new online educators in how to extract the necessary, and prioritize.


This puts us in the fortunate position to be taking a ‘business as usual’ approach to the COVID-19 outbreak.  Our teams remain committed to achieving what we set out to do, and we are well-positioned to continue to meet milestones.

Meg Knight

Chief Operating Officer at Construct, Cape Town