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Embedded Systems

Steering Agile Through A Rally Course

Rally Software's new Portfolio Management (PM) product has been released this week with a direct emphasis placed upon its Agile development suitability. Rally Portfolio Manager features coaching services designed for development leaders to optimize their work beyond the sprint and release level.

This new product launch comes in response to what Rally says is a central challenge for Agile, i.e. now the business must more rapidly and more frequently determine where to allocate development resources to steer the portfolio in the most profitable direction — and development teams must align with the larger strategic plan.

"Rally Portfolio Manager serves as the single system of record for distributing real-time, strategic decision-making information to both business and development leaders," said Rally's VP of Products, Todd Olson. "It enables an iterative, flexible, and pragmatic approach to assembling an organization's portfolio and investing in the highest return projects."

"Both the PMO and development teams want to succeed. Development organizations may balk at what they perceive as needless administrative overhead, but there are ways to create information that meets both sides' needs," Forrester Research, Inc. wrote in the report "The PMO In An Agile World: Can't We All Just Get Along?," August 3, 2011. "Organizations should consider adopting application development management tools or Agile project management tools to enable developers to work in their familiar environment while still delivering necessary data for PMO status reporting."

Rally Portfolio Manager aims to provide full traceability from the portfolio level to the development task level. PMOs and business leaders can assess the impact of redirecting development resources to address new competitive threats or market opportunities, and collaboratively decide the best course of action. Rally Portfolio Manager aggregates development status above the team and user story levels to track progress in a form that is useful for the business. PMOs and business leaders can answer questions about active and completed projects, budget, and foreseeable delays.

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