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17393RE: [scrumdevelopment] Distributed Daily Standup - how do make them work?

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  • Carey, Ben
    Nov 14, 2006
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      Our team is currently experimenting with a lot of different ways to do this. We have three people in one location in the US, two in other states in the US, and a few team members across the ocean. I don’t think we have the ideal answer yet, but here is what we are doing…


      1.       The main team gets together  around a wall gantt. The remote members call in on a conference number. We publish the results of the standup (the updated burndown) to Campfire (www.campfirenow.com).

      2.       We go to a shared room and stand around the wall gantt (we have a shared room, but it’s only our for part of the day).

      3.       We haven’t used a webcam yet, but we do use a camera and post a daily picture of the wall gantt to Campfire.  We have a chat room that we post an Excel spreadsheet (with the sprint backlog) and we also post a picture of the wall gantt every day after the standup. We also use the room to post a daily burndown image. This isn’t as good as being there, but it seems to work well for a distributed team.

      4.       We’ve used Excel and we’ve used Confluence. I like both. I always use Excel for the burndown, so we’re trying to remove Confluence from the picture so that we don’t have the same information duplicated in three places (Excel, Confluence, and the wall gantt). I’m sure that there is some way to make a graph in Confluence, but I haven’t explored that yet.

      5.       I wish I had a good answer for this one. As of now, I haven’t found a way. Locally, we rely on the wall. Distributed members focus on the Excel document.


      The item out of everything above that works the best is Campfire. Although we are all distributed, a common and ongoing chat room (or rooms) works wonders for casual conversation and instant collaboration. We can also search the room when we need to reference things we talked about. Campfire is cheap and it’s a good answer for smaller teams.



      From: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com [mailto:scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Mark Levison
      Sent: Tuesday, November 14, 2006 12:25 PM
      To: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com; agileprojectmanagement@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: [scrumdevelopment] Distributed Daily Standup - how do make them work?


      How do you make distributed daily standups work. We have seven developers working in one location and two working in the UK. I can't change the situation and so am trying to find ways of making the team work. So I want to know how other distributed teams conduct the standup?

      1. Do you bring the main group together in one place and teleconference in the others?
      2. Does everyone sit in front of their machines and use Skype? (currently our team still has neighbouring cubes - we don't have a team room).
      3. Do you use a webcam?
      4. Do you replace the task board with Excel? ScrumWorks? Other software?
        1. if you use software how do get the public commitment of the taskboard?
        2. if you use software how do you get people to stay focused on the tasks in the standup?
      1. If you continue to use a task board how do you make it meaningful to the overseas developers?

      trying hard to make a distributed team work.
      Mark Levison
      Blog: http://www.notesfromatooluser.com/

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