19th November 2019

What kind of project are you currently working on?

I work with a group grocery buying business based in London.

What's your role?

I’m the software developer that develops literally anything they need doing, mainly JavaScript but also the DevOps for the product.

What’s the makeup of your team?

It’s 3 developers, 3 testers and one copywriter.

So if say something tiny needed improving, low impact, how easy would it be to get into production?

That’s funny, I’ve done exactly that this morning. Well it started off the other day, but to be honest the founder just said developers need an easy way to stage their work, so I said I can build an automated staging environment that setup environments based on their GitHub profiles for this product. He asked what the benefit was, so I told him what it was. He did yeah, do it today.

Is it always that way if you say there was a bug would you fix it that day and it be out that day?

No, the way we report bugs is we have us sprints so anything that's reported goes into the new column.

On Trello?

Yeah on Trello, but we are looking to move them to Github.

We add it to the new column and then they triage it and then during their pre-sprint planning meeting they add it to either the sprint column or the pre-sprint column depending on the severity. So if it’s urgent it goes into this sprint, depending on the priority.

So is that how you plan all work in for sprints?

That's just the bugs. There is a long backlog of features and other bugs that aren't mission-critical like layout problems or we want to change how this thing looks or change what the button says.

They, both the founders, settle on a topic and decide in pre-sprint planning what should be in the sprint. As the developers we say this is going to take this long and we tend to work each to 18 to 21 points for the 2 weeks.

Then once we get to 21/22 points we stop adding stuff to the sprint. The points are based around this premise that 8 points is about 3 days. I know you’re not supposed to add time to the points, but it needs quantifying.

Does it work well for the team?

We are constantly refining it. At the beginning of the project we said about having all this process in place straight away, like sprint planning, but it just didn’t happen. It was impossible because we were building a brand new thing and nobody had sat down to break it up into into tasks that weren’t "build the entire admin" but over the last four or five months I’ve really pushed on getting sprints in with the founder and sorting it out and (it’s such a silly thing to say as it means nothing to anybody) but as a scrum master, I've been guiding the founder through how to be a scrum master.

So did you have training to become a scrum master?

I did, I spent a few years in London being trained.

Was that worth it?

Um... no. It is valuable to teach to clients because it's an easy way for them to manage my relatively unmanageable time. It's difficult to manage a developers time. Because a bug happens so they stop doing what they were doing and they do the bug. It becomes very easy and transparent for the founder or a client to see what's happening in why and when with sprints.


Size of team: