Agile product management and portfolio platforms explained

Tools like Jira and Azure DevOps serve only part of the agile team’s job functions. Here are the agile tools that will take you to the next level

Agile product management and portfolio platforms explained
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When you ask product owners if agile tools work well for them, you’ll get a mixed, sometimes negative response. Agile tools do help agile teams, but they don’t provide all the capabilities that product owners need to do their jobs.

Similarly, agile tools have limited functionality to help program and portfolio managers. Agile tools typically provide reports on teams, releases, and epics that are often insufficient to help program managers reports on top-down strategic initiatives.

So, don’t be surprised if the product owner on your team hates Atlassian’s Jira or if the program manager can’t get the reporting they need from Jira or Microsoft’s Azure DevOps. Those tools only serve part of the team’s job functions.

Backlogs, sprint boards, and scrum reports do not fully address the tools product managers need to conceive great products or help program managers align strategic goals with the work performed by agile teams. If you’re stuck in a lot of meetings with product and program managers reviewing work status or learning business strategies through PowerPoint presentations, your organization may be ready for an agile product management or portfolio management platform.

Agile management platforms such as Jira and Azure DevOps are primarily designed for agile delivery teams that include developers, testers, and devops engineers. They have boards to manage the status of user stories and other types of work committed to the active sprint, and they have other backlog management tools to help review, sequence, and prioritize stories for future sprints. They come with built in burndown reports and other reports to help agile teams track velocity, review blocks, measure cycle times, and manage work in progress. Agile tools also help product owners write stories, document acceptance criteria, and review story point estimates. They use the tools to prioritize work for sprints and track progress.

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