Doing BI Agile

March 22, 2018
August 24, 2020

By Bill McLellan, Senior Consultant and BI Solution Architect

The agile approach to software development focuses on delivering incremental value to customers in quick iterative product creation and enhancement. Agile methods push developers to gather feedback constantly so that they maximize the benefit of their efforts and minimize waste – rework and failed adoption by users.

You don’t just want to do things right; you also want to do the right things. The same strategy applies to every kind of BI project from data integration to analytics to visualization.

Using a variety of standard agile practices with a special focus on providing well-designed tools that executives, business analysts, and future developers love to use is the first step to doing BI Agile.  

  • Customers should find dashboards full of insights and easy to navigate.
  • Dashboard developers should find data marts and warehouses intuitive and performant.
  • The meaning of terms and metrics should be clear, well documented, and easily accessible.
  • Making changes and enhancements to visuals, business logic, and technical performance should not require starting from scratch.
  • Everything we build we design for reuse so that everyone’s efforts move forward and never step back.

Traditionally, in the Waterfall method of developing software and data products, development teams have gathered extensive business requirements up front and designed solutions in detailed specifications before anyone writes code, queries data, or shows a chart to a manager. Agile methods, in contrast, are lean on requirement gathering and solution design up front because we know things change, and we want things to change as painlessly as possible.

Think of Agile as climbing a spiral staircase instead of a series of cliffs. We must gather requirements, design solutions, make things work, test, and implement, but we perform each of these activities in short cycles instead long sequential steps.

Onebridge delivers consulting solutions you need with a service delivery model you want. Our blended delivery model combined with our data analytics, application management, and quality and compliance consulting services, allows flexible access to diverse technical expertise. We are dedicated to empowering creative, driven and entrepreneurial personalities that enable fun, dynamic, and highly collaborative teams.

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