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Managing Agile CMS Projects

All the pieces have fallen into place for that big website project. You've chosen a CMS, you've lined up the budget, you've gathered a team of developers, you've selected a design firm. You've worked with all the stakeholders and come up with a long list of features. The CMS will provide many of them, but some will need custom development. How are you going to manage the project?

You know written requirements "thrown over the wall" can lead to trouble. Your client's budget is fixed and their requirements are imperfectly defined. Clearly an agile, iterative approach that adapts to change is needed, but your environment is not what agile experts would recommend. No one is co-located and no one is working full time on this project. How can you use agile techniques with a part time team and a project that is part design, part development - all within a feature-rich CMS environment?

In this talk, given at the Gilbane Conference, Sally Kleinfeldt describes an approach to managing website development projects in an agile fashion, with a part time, distributed team. Topics will include roles, scheduling, release planning, writing user stories, and estimation. The value of these techniques are very clear to stakeholders. They get full ownership of their project, choosing what is delivered at every step along the way. And by working with the CMS rather than against it, they get the system they envisioned while minimizing development costs.

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