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Use Sprints in Microsoft Dynamics Implementation Projects

Using sprints or iterations in Microsoft Dynamics Implementations can add great value to your Microsoft Dynamics projects.

Image of business people at starting line of a raceA sprint is a “time-boxed” period of work that has a defined output by a self-organized team. In the world of Dynamics implementations the team would consist of both client and partner members. At the end of the sprint the “output” is reviewed with stakeholders at a sprint review meeting. The output for Dynamics projects is more diverse than the traditional software development project, where a potentially shippable product is typically the only output. Dynamics projects also have elements of soft deliverables. An example of a soft deliverable might be the education of the order entry department through training.

Here are some ways that sprints can add value to Microsoft Dynamics projects:

  • Sprints provide a velocity boost to your projects. Sprints give the team more points of urgency during the lifecycle of a project. With Dynamics implementation projects the only milestone we might encounter is the go-live. With a single milestone, we tend to see urgency only occur at the end of the project. We create multiple occurrences of urgency by using sprints in our project. Creating more urgency in a project results in a greater project velocity.
  • Sprints help provide better cost control during a project. Creating a budget and then reviewing variances for a sprint helps with cost control during a project. Breaking the project budget down into smaller chunks helps identify problems sooner than later.
  • Sprints help the client better see and understand project progress. Reviewing the output of a sprint gives the client an opportunity to review the progress of a project at the end of each sprint. Traditionally, clients may not see or understand the progress of the project until late in the project lifecycle.
  • Sprints force teams to deliver frequently and often. Many times team members struggle with the tasks that they have taken on. Using sprints helps identify team members and work that is falling behind. Sprints help keep tasks on track through small and frequent incremental delivery of output.

Using sprints in your Microsoft Dynamics projects can make your projects more successful and help deliver more business value to your stakeholders.

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