top of page

Infrastructure Project Management and Scrum: Tips on how to make it work!

Updated: Oct 30, 2022

As someone who has spent a lot of time on infrastructural IT projects, I have used Scrum practices or ceremonies many times, and I would like to share my practices with you.


But let's start with what infrastructure projects are.

Infrastructure projects focus on developing and maintaining servers, platforms, and systems.

An example of an infrastructure project could be an update of a platform to a higher version, implementation of a new wireless network, or migration of databases.


When working with infrastructure projects, teams often face following patterns:
  • Projects usually have hard deadlines (well, if you don't migrate the platform before X day, either the company will pay an insane amount of money or lose data).

  • In most cases, the requirements are very well defined

  • Strict dependencies between tasks

  • Very often, when working on the project (e.g., migration), at the same time, the team has to do BAU work or support

  • There is almost always a 3rd party involved (be it a vendor or an outsourced team)



Well, how can Scrum help in all this?

1. Prioritization

Prioritization is not typically a Scrum case, but it is crucial when running projects with hard deadlines and reserved BAU work (work related to platform maintenance and support). As a Project Manager of such a project, you need to be in constant contact with the stakeholders and keep your finger on the pulse to make good and timely work prioritization and decisions that will help deliver the project on time and support the product or platform.


2. Sprints

Working in Sprints will help you understand how much the team can deliver in an iteration and will help you better distribute the percentage of work between the project and BAU activities. When having deadlines, as much predictability as possible is critical.


Scheduling Sprints will also help level out the amount of work ''under the table'' (the way I call tasks that stakeholders try to push out of the Project Manager's control).


3. Retrospective

Retrospectives can be extremely useful for infrastructure projects. Often in infrastructure projects, there is a lack of a ''feedback loop'' so it is beneficial to do such retrospectives from time to time to find improvement areas and note lessons learned.


4. The Three Pillars of Empiricism

Scrum says that to achieve the best impact from using the Scrum framework, the team should stick to the three pillars - transparency, inspection, and adaptation.


The idea is that the team should know what is happening and why (transparency), check its work as it progresses (inspection), and change the direction of work if the situation requires it (adaptation).


The above pillars are essential not only in development but also in infrastructure projects. It is worthwhile to explain these pillars to the team and adapt them as an attitude to work in the team.


5. Definition of Done

DoD is something infrastructure projects will gain the most from. Infrastructure is sensitive and requires more control, so having a checklist of what should happen before we consider the work done as expected is essential here.


If you are looking for a seasoned Infrastructure Project Manager or wondering how to lead well infrastructure projects in the company - write to me!

268 views0 comments

Comments


bottom of page