Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Poll- Milestone/Iteration Reviews, The Benefits

Milestone, or iteration reviews, are done at the end of each milestone or iteration. It is a demonstration to key stakeholders including one or more customers that you have completed the work for that milestone. It is also an opportunity for the stakeholders to provide feedback on the work. Reviews provide a test of the functionality, show progress towards goals, and build confidence in the work. The demonstration is a visible, trustworthy, and confidence building way of showing progress. If you can’t demo the work, how do you know how much real progress you are making?

So, if you were starting a software company with your own money, would you do milestone reviews or wouldn't you?

Next: Poll - Retrospectives, The Benefits


Paul W. Homer said...

Sales and demos are better forms of feedback. You can't build good tools for people if you never talk to them.

Damon Poole said...

Hi Paul,

I'm not sure I described this practice very well based on your comment. I will go back and update it soon. In the meantime...

Sales is definitely a good form of feedback. But waiting until the product is ready to sell is a long time to wait for feedback. An iteration review is basically a demo, but it is a demo prior to having sales-ready product where you solicit feedback and are looking for folks to point out problems and suggest alternatives.

The whole idea of the iteration review is that you are talking to customers and potential customers.

The iteration review is also only a back-end check. Hopefully the content of the iteration represents the highest value based on lots of talking to customers/prospects/stakeholders.