Enterprise Architect version 13

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Thursday, 21 July 2016 05:42

Kanban with Enterprise Architect

At Sparx Systems there are a number of key objectives that are always in the minds of the developers. One is delivering what the end user wants and the other is to exceed end user expectations, by delivering to their needs at an affordable price point. A third objective is to add value by making the end user experience more practical, inclusive and convenient.

 

These are the reasons why Enterprise Architect is the total modelling and design environment, -adaptable and extensible, providing all that is required by the end user and reducing or eliminating the inconvenience of access to the “external application”. That’s a simple expectation of a modelling tool, and the Sparx Systems interpretation of this expectation puts Enterprise Architect Version 13 in a class of its own.

 

Kanban was first introduced into Enterprise Architect Version 11. As a key agile process, Kanban is a method for managing knowledge work, with an emphasis on just-in-time delivery. It presents all participants with a full view of the process, from task definition, to delivery to a customer. Because Kanban is a set of practices that can also be implemented in traditional hierarchical bureaucracy, it does not present a threat to the existing culture and can work within different cultures.

 

In 2015 a Forrester survey found that the customer experience topped priorities for business and technology leaders. Based on these results Forrester forecasts that in 2016, customer experience “will be among the top 10 critical success factors determining who will win and who will fail in the age of the customer.” This is interesting because agile processes embrace change, which translates as the customer’s competitive advantage. Or put another way, the price of survival is to become agile. In recent times Kanban has been applied to the process of developing software-centric solutions in an attempt to ensure that value is delivered to the customer as quickly as possible.

 

Kanban is an agile entry point that while it does not challenge the culture it can be used to challenge the status quo. However, as an agile practice Kanban can be a cultural “change agent” and lead to Scrum and XP agile practices. Enterprise Architect offers a complete Agile Project Management foundation for the largest to the smallest of projects, supporting mainstream agile delivery frameworks and methods including, SCRUM, RUP, XP, DSDM and Kanban.

 

Kanban revolves around a visual board for managing work-in-progress and making work flow issues apparent through process definition based on how the work is handled in the team and on stakeholder priorities. A backlog is created in order to keep track of the work and as a basis for setting priorities. The cycle time of the tickets can be measured and used to keep track on improvements.

 

kanban three stage workflow sml kanban model patterns sml

 

Enterprise Architect has built-in Kanban diagrams and a number of pre-built workflow patterns that can be used 'as-is' or configured to suit any project or initiative. Because Enterprise Architect is also a sophisticated modeling platform for strategic and business analysis, architecture, design, implementation, testing and deployment, this Kanban facility becomes very powerful. Work items on a Kanban Board can be linked to strategic decisions, business rules, policies, requirements, architecture and design elements and every facility in the development lifecycle.

 

Agile planning is the assessment of the rate that agile teams can convert customer requirements into deployment ready software, while determining when they will be done. Burn down charts will provide these indicators. With Enterprise Architect burn down charts and time series graphs can be easily created and these are regularly and automatically updated by Enterprise Architect. A sophisticated charting facility is available to create powerful and expressive charts and dashboards, that will provide insights into the Kanban process and enable Product Owners and other team members to monitor performance and determine ways of fine tuning how the team works. There are a range of built-in charts, including bar, pie charts and heat maps, but a team is free to create any number of user-defined charts, which can also be incorporated into team processes and reviews.

 

As the affordable solution of choice for organisations who want to adopt Agile, including Kanban, Enterprise Architect 13 concantenates potentially siloed projects or sprints and provides assurance against the risk of segregation and ultimate fracturing of visibility across the enterprise, which can be caused by ad-hoc Agile initiatives.

 

In Enterprise Architect 13, Kanbans can be set at the individual level or project level in a shared model. With the 'My Kanban' feature, individual work can be tracked while the 'Project Kanban' option supports the team.

 

Projects of any size can benefit from the efficiencies of the flexible and integrated Kanban facility built into the Enterprise Architect core product. The Kanban features in Enterprise Architect are highly configurable and can be altered to suit any team or process, including agile, iterative and incremental, and even waterfall projects. This simple, yet powerful project management approach, creates a team collaboration platform that will result in products, services and solutions being delivered to customers with efficiency and in record time.

 

Webinar Recording: Introduction to Kanban and Heatmaps (using EA 12.1)

 

Workflow model patterns have been added, enabling the creation and linking of single or multiple stage Kanban workflows utilizing the Backlog, Iteration and Complete Kanban diagrams to support the existing “Standard type”. Together, these form powerful Kanban workflows, allowing the easy movement of Kanban elements between them. This movement provides the user with a view of the current team resources allocated to the Kanban element, enabling them to see what resource has been assigned, and completion status.

 

To assist with control of agile sprints, new menu items are available from the Construct Ribbon to search and find all Kanbans in a model. Kanban drawing style can be used showing Type, Status, Version, Priority, Bold Name, Stereotype, Phase, Author, and Truncate with name and Icon.

 

Work Items can be drawn with a compelling visual style, such as a colored card that can be dragged anywhere in the diagram to change order in a given lane, or from lane to lane, progressing from left to right through the board, representing progress towards value for the customer. The lanes are typically bound to the values of a 'project management aware' property such as status or phase, and as the item is dragged from lane to lane the value of the bound property is automatically changed. If a diagram is linked to a project management property, dragging an element from one lane to another automatically changes the value of the property, to the value that the lane represents.

 

To review Kanban features supported by Enterprise Architect 13. please visit:

Published in Sparx Insights
Thursday, 03 April 2014 14:36

Smarter Meetings with Enterprise Architect

Have you ever been to a meeting that was a waste of time?

Do some of your meetings end without the result you need? Or with no result at all?

Having the right information available at the right time in the right format would make everything so much easier.

 Everyone better prepared

  • Less confusion over what's required
  • Fewer poor decisions made
  • Less time wasted
  • A clear direction mapped out.

Enterprise Architect gives users access to the all the right information at the right time, and it’s simple to format it all to make meetings really productive.

So here are ten top tips to make your project meetings smarter.

Published in White Papers

On 5 February 2014, the next European EA User Group event will take place in Utrecht. This Enterprise Architect event is for professionals who work with this tool and want to share knowledge to use EA more effectively.

Are you interested in how you can use EA for your role or organization? How EA can be used in combination with other tools? What the important tips and tricks are from the use of EA?

We have lined up a range of speakers to appeal to many different disciplines who can use Enterprise Architect, such as project management, architecture, requirements management, development and testing.View the full agenda, including presentations in English and Dutch.

This event is taking place at the headquarters of NS, who are pleased to welcome the European EA User Group. Sign up at www.eausergroup.com and join us on 5 February in Utrecht.

 


Op 5 februari 2014 wordt het Europese EA User Group evenement georganiseerd in Utrecht. Dit Enterprise Architect event is voor alle professionals die werken met deze tool en kennis willen opdoen om EA nog effectiever in te kunnen zetten.

De sprekers op deze dag zullen  verschillende disciplines aanspreken die gebruik kunnen maken van Enterprise Architect, zoals projectmanagement, architectuur, requirements management, ontwikkeling en test.   

Ben je geïnteresseerd op welke manier je EA kan inzetten voor jou rol of organisatie? Hoe je EA kan gebruiken in combinatie met andere tools? Wat de belangrijke tips&tricks zijn van het gebruik van EA?

Meld je dan aan via www.eausergroup.com zodat we je op 5 februari in Utrecht op het Hoofdkantoor van NS kunnen verwelkomen op de Europese EA User Group. 

Published in News
This White Paper looks at ways to create project documents that improve project quality, provide readers with relevant, easily navigated information, and give new insights. Using EA and eaDocX, approaches are described that can bring our project communications into the 21st Century.

This White Paper looks at ways to transform our project documents, helping readers to find and use information that is relevant to them. 

In both Waterfall and Agile developments, excellent documents can improve project quality and give new insights. New document capabilities allow authors to create high quality, accurate and targeted documents, and allow readers to navigate their way through them in an intuitive way. 

By storing information in EA, and using eaDocX, approaches are described that can bring our project communications into the 21st Century.  Documents which:

- contain only content which is relevant to the reader

- provide a range of presentation styles 

- engage and hold the reader's attention

- guide the reader as to where they should concentrate their attention

- give the reader freedom to navigate the document’s contents as they wish

eaDocX - document excellence

Published in White Papers