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agile dsdm agilepm

DSDM Agile PM - How good you are?

by dryobates

Company that I work in has chosen DSDM AgilePM as a method for our current project. I was one of *the chosens* that were sent to AgilePM training. So I have gained some knowledge that should be tested...

Edge cases

It's obvious for a TDD developers that functions should be checked for edge cases. Why not to test DSDM AgilePM [1] the same way... ]:->

AgilePM markets itself as being able to scale up easier than some other agile methodologies/frameworks. How well it could scale down? :>

As a form of exercise I thought I could use it to drive one-member team ;) AgilePM compressed to extreme!


AgilePM recognises 13 roles [2].

Project level roles which are responsible for high level view:

  • Business Sponsor
  • Business Visionary
  • Project Manager
  • Technical Coordinator
  • Business Analyst

Solution Development Team roles which are responsible for building product:

  • Business Analyst (same person as in project level role)
  • Team Leader
  • Business Ambassador
  • Solution Developer
  • Solution Tester

Supporting roles:

  • Technical Advisory
  • Business Advisory
  • Workshop Facilitator
  • Coach

Now I'll became greedy and will keep all those roles by myself ]:->

Although I'm expecting some collaboration issues ;)


According to AgilePM, in pre-project phase one document should be created: Terms of Reference.

AgilePM allows adjusting process to your needs. Not all documents have to be created. Not all have to be long documents full of marketing sh... wording.

On course AgilePM trainer made some important sentence:

If you're going to write some document, first think, who will be reading it. If you do not expect anyone would read it then do not write it!

So... will I read ToR? The main purpose of ToR is to describe business driver and objectives of project and outline it's scope. I would rather not like to loose my focus on what is goal of this project (so that I wouldn't start writing DTP software instead of writing algorithm bible ;) ). I probably should read it often. Especially while creating requirements.

So my decision: pay some time and write ToR.

Terms of Reference

Who should write it? According to DSDM anybody... Well it's not quite precise...

What form to choose? Filling all those long templates for my needs would be madness. So as "anybody" I'll state it simple:

I can't cope with organizing all my tasks and commitments. Although I have quite a lot knowledge base in my head I have problems finding materials to support my statements. Give me some tool to organize all my matters and knowledge supporting materials!

Short and simple. There is business driver and main objectives.

(Have I ever wrote that in my opinion the best license is beerware? ;))

Every document in DSDM should be approved by some role. ToR should be approved by Business Sponsor.

Would I, the Business Sponsor, pay for such product helping me resolve my need? (In my one-person team case: pay = waste my time doing it for the sole experiment purpose)

Oh yes! That's look like a great idea!

(I think that I shouldn't run my own business with such light attitude... ;) )


That was only the first phase that should answer for the question: Do this project suit my business?

I need such tool (my organization "need") I'm software engineer and I write tools (my organization "profile"). So the answer is: yes it suit my business. Does ToR helped me in that decision? Not really.

Was it worth spending some time to write this 3 sentences? I'll see later if I use this in subsequent phases.

[1]DSDM AgilePM
[2]DSDM roles
Jakub Stolarski. Software engineer. I work professionally as programmer since 2005. Speeding up software development with Test Driven Development, task automation and optimization for performance are things that focus my mind from my early career up to now. If you ask me for my religion: Python, Vim and FreeBSD are my trinity ;) Email: