Continuous Discovery: The Next Agile Frontier

An oversimplification of the Agile mission could be "to deliver the most value with the least amount of software". It is difficult to know whether a piece of software is valuable before it is in-front of real users. In short, we need to deliver small chunks of software as often as possible to evaluate their value.


At CivicActions, we use Scrum as our framework for continuous delivery of small software-chunks; and we have chosen user-centered design methodologies to discover the ideas, products and features that will deliver the most value to our clients and their users.


Many Agile teams perform a plethora of discovery tasks at the beginning of a project to try and understand the business and user needs. This practice has been commonly labelled Sprint 0 or Discovery Sprint.


While this is a step in the right direction, we know that project discovery cannot be contained in a single sprint. As we work, we are continuously learning about the business goals, users, and our own assumptions.


In the same way that the formalization of Agile in the Scrum framework has made Agile a staple of our industry, formalizing a continuous discovery practice could elevate how we deliver software, with Agility, to the next level.


In this session, I would like to share with you how we are currently practicing continuous discovery at CivicActions by bringing together many tools and practices into a continuous delivery flow:

  • Opportunity Backlogs
  • Audiences and Outcomes exercises
  • Personas
  • User Interviews
  • Mockups and prototypes
  • User story mapping
  • Journey maps
  • etc

At the end of this session, you will have the necessary resources and understanding to start walking toward the next Agile frontier: Continuous Discovery.

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