Welcome to Keep Austin Agile 2017, an exciting conference packed with 35 sessions crafted by speakers from the Austin agile community and around the country. Whether you are a newbie or a experienced Agilist, we’ve got you covered. Join Agile Austin for our 5th Keep Austin Agile Conference. Register Today!

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Product Management [clear filter]
Thursday, May 25

9:35am CDT

The Adaptive Agile Business Analyst
How can you be an effective Business Analyst (BA) in any organization no matter its Agile maturity? Come and find out how to be an adaptive BA!

In many organizations, Business Analyst effectiveness is often limited by the maturity of the organization in which they work. In this session, Leon Sabarsky will leverage his years of Agile and Business Analysis education and experience to give attendees practical guidance on how to maximize their Business Analysis effectiveness no matter the maturity of the organization.

For example, a very experienced Business Analyst may not be able to implement all of their best practices that they have acquired in their tool box over the years in their organization, especially if they join a new organization. Similarly, a less experienced Business Analyst may find that, as they grow in education and experience in their craft,  their organization is not keeping "up with the times".

avatar for Leon Sabarsky

Leon Sabarsky

CEO, Healthy Agile
Leon Sabarsky excels at building high performing software development teams for all types of organizations. He has 20 years of IT experience and has been an Agilist in highly regulated environments for the past 10 years, primarily in the healthcare and government sectors. He initiated... Read More →

Thursday May 25, 2017 9:35am - 10:35am CDT
Room 8
  Product Management

10:55am CDT

If You Build It, Will They Use It? Using Business Objectives to Build the Right Thing
Business Objectives are the measurable results a business desires to achieve when executing a project. They can be used to help prioritize the product backlog, and to ensure that everything developed in the project contributes to the desired measurable business value.

In this discussion, we will explore how to develop good business objectives. Once the business objectives have been defined, how to use them to define epics for the start of the product backlog. Finally, how you can use business objectives to help prioritize the epics and user stories in the product backlog.

avatar for Betsy Stockdale

Betsy Stockdale

Business Architect, Seilevel
Betsy Stockdale is a Business Architect at Seilevel, a professional services company that works to deliver 10x value for their customers. Betsy works with companies to lead their projects or modify their approach to software requirements to be more effective so IT projects deliver... Read More →

Thursday May 25, 2017 10:55am - 11:55am CDT
Room 3 & 4

1:20pm CDT

Agile Operations Teams - Kanban, Scrum, and WorkCenters
Operations teams typically struggle to make and keep commitments larger than a few days due to the myriad of break fix, operational change, and tuning work that happens on a daily basis. Larger projects, such as critical hardware replacement, core software upgrades, and other tasks that are often important for security reasons, performance reasons, etc. go undone or end up partially done with the difficult items lanquishing.

At Kasasa, the speakers have worked out a way to handle projects large and small while continuing to maintain the flow style work necessary to "run the business."  They combined the types of work and work center notions from Gene Kim's seminole DevOps book The Phoenix Project with the Scrum and Kanban Agile models in order to organize their teams to address technical debt and business projects.

This talk will not only explore what their company is doing today, but begin by taking a look at the larger situation along with failed attempts at team organization and the application of DevOps and Agile thinking. Attendees will walk away with more than a, "Wow, that is a neat way to organize," but also have a model to think about the application of Agile in a less traditional - and more volatile - situation.

avatar for Boyd Hemphill

Boyd Hemphill

Director of Cloud Infrastructure, Contrast Security
Boyd Hemphill is the CTO at VictoryCTO where he helps customers win in their respective markets by realizing the potential of their technology. Boyd is a DevOps raconteur and thought leader in the silicon hills of Austin Texas. Boyd founded Austin DevOps and plays a role in the... Read More →
avatar for Christa Meck

Christa Meck

Scrum Master, Kasasa
For over 20 years, Christa has been helping teams find sanity in the chaotic world of Information Technology. As a Scrum Master at Kasasa, Christa introduced Agile to non-development teams with heavy interrupt-driven work and showed them it's possible to complete projects too! With... Read More →

Thursday May 25, 2017 1:20pm - 2:20pm CDT
Room 2
  Product Management

1:20pm CDT

Not Your Mama's Acceptance Criteria: A Product Owner's Guide to Writing Excellent User Stories

High-quality Agile requirements are more than just user stories; they are visual models, testable acceptance criteria, and the result of collaborative facilitated sessions with your stakeholders and team. Given, When, Then (or Gherkin language) is an effective style for documenting acceptance criteria, particularly in support of teams engaged in behavior-driven development processes.

In this interactive discussion, we will talk about what it takes to get to a “good” user story. We start with visual models that help identify and prioritize the right user stories and use proven techniques to elaborate stories into solid acceptance criteria in the Gherkin format (that could be consumed by automation tools like Cucumber). We then take a real world example from idea to “ready” requirement, so you can walk away from this session with hands-on experience at crafting user stories that are ready for the team and testable.

avatar for Megan Jackson Stowe

Megan Jackson Stowe

Senior Product Manager, Seilevel
Megan is a Senior Product Manager at Seilevel. As a Seilevel Certified Instructor and practitioner, she helps ensure clients’ teams are building the right thing (delivering the full business value intended), while also building it fast. With a heavy focus on the Agile methodology... Read More →

Thursday May 25, 2017 1:20pm - 2:20pm CDT
Room 5

2:40pm CDT

Managing Product Backlogs at All Levels of the Enterprise
As companies roll out Agile to their entire enterprise, they often run into issues of scaling product ownership from the team level (with one team and one Product Owner) to the program or even portfolio level. Figuring out how to manage the product backlogs across the organization, especially in terms of dependencies, can be a monumental feat.

In this talk, we'll have a guided discussion about some of the more popular approaches on the market for scaling product ownership for program and portfolio analysis, and share how using visual models will help in understanding dependencies and value across all levels of the enterprise.

avatar for Candace Hockason

Candace Hockason

SeminarsWorld Instructor
Candase is a Senior Product Manager at Seilevel and a PMI-Agile Certified Practitioner. Candase helps her clients to clearly understand the desired business value of the projects she works on so that the project team can focus on only the features/requirements that bring the most... Read More →

Thursday May 25, 2017 2:40pm - 3:40pm CDT
Room 5

4:00pm CDT

Using Behavioral Design to Build Engaging Products
Decisions we make every day are driven by cognitive biases designed to save time and energy. These mental shortcuts serve us well. Marketers have used this knowledge to build successful marketing strategies for many years. Armed with the same knowledge, is it possible for us to build more engaging products?

Part of designing a great product is convincing users to behave in a way to reach a specific outcome. Behavioural design provides us a framework to think about how habits work and what makes them easier to form. It specifically shows how using motivation, ability, and triggers can shape a user's behavior.

In this talk, we'll look at using behavioural design to build an engagement loop. Chris will share how he integrates these ideas into their Agile development process. You'll leave with practicable steps for applying these ideas to your next product.

avatar for Chris Shinkle

Chris Shinkle

Director of Innovation, SEP
Chris is a practitioner and maker. He is a thought leader and continually initiates new ideas and continuous improvement at SEP. His experience comes from building products with many large clients in a variety of industries: aerospace, medical, healthcare, finance, etc. He introduced... Read More →

Thursday May 25, 2017 4:00pm - 5:00pm CDT
Room 7