One Size Does Not Fit All: Agile in the Public Sector

May 23, 2016 Thomas Hooker

CollabNet has a long history helping the federal market build quality software at speed, including the Department of Defense (DoD), which is, believe it or not, one of the most active software developers in the world. Federal software needs range widely — from military and defense systems, to communications, command and control and operations — so you can imagine how complex the development and delivery processes have become. With so many layers of DoD software development, corralling the systems into a manageable workflow is an enormous task, and that’s where Forge.mil comes in.

CollabNet’s TeamForge ALM platform serves as a foundation for Forge.mil, a six-year-project that helps more than 20,000 developers from a wide range of organizations organize, manage and collaborate on thousands of projects. The project is highly regarded as a huge success and credited with saving millions of tax payer dollars due to improved efficiency and productivity.

We recently held a Federal User Group in Washington DC with our partner Carahsoft, where we met with our public sector customers and shared trends and vision and heard concerns and questions. Carahsoft has served as CollabNet’s master aggregator and government distribution partner since June 2010 and supports CollabNet’s goverment practice within federal, state, local government, and integrator communities.

I wanted to share this great blog post by Rich Savage, OpenSource Sales Manager at Carahsoft, about adoption of Agile by public sector organizations:

Agility is a buzzword and growing trend in Public Sector IT. It signals a move away from traditional, waterfall development of massive IT systems to an iterative process for building smaller applications that bring together large legacy systems. But in this move to agile development, many IT professionals search for a checklist of how to move to an agile organization. The truth is, no such list exists. Agile is just that – agile.

While there are many ways to implement agile methods, a wholesale change from traditional development methodologies is likely not the right path for any government agency. Over the past decade, many agile processes have developed and evolved with varying frameworks that address different business needs and agency types. With the growing variety of templates for agile development, selecting the right approach can become even more difficult. More, the scale and scope, specifications, and schema varies drastically from organization to organization, so one size agile does not fit all. In light of all these variables, how are government agencies expected to be able to develop agile methods that fit their agency and are able to adjust to changing needs and developments?

YOU CAN READ THE FULL ARTICLE POSTED ON CARAHSOFT’S COMMUNITY BLOG HERE.

YOU CAN DOWNLOAD THE COMPLIMENTARY GARTNER REPORT, “MAKING SENSE OF THE AGILE METHODOLOGY WARS,” MENTIONED BY RICH SAVAGE IN THIS BLOG POST, HERE.    


Forge.mil has given the DoD a number of benefits and has served to strengthen the software quality, innovation and certainly the agility of the software development and delivery process. We plan to continue our focus on improving the Federal software market and will increase our investments in this sector in the coming year.

About the Author

Thomas Hooker

Thomas Hooker is vice president of marketing at Collabnet. As the head of CollabNet's marketing team, he oversees demand generation, brand, customer marketing, public relations, analyst relations, product marketing, and corporate communications. A 20+ year veteran of high-tech Thomas has held Marketing, Product Management and Engineering positions at a variety of leading companies including BMC, Boole & Babbage, Tidal Software and Cisco.

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