The Building Business Capability 2016 conference was held in Las Vegas 31 October until 4 November. The event attracted approximately 1400 people from 20+ countries. It is the flagship conference of the International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA), held in North America every year.
The Agile Open Jam has been a feature of the conference for the last 3 years, sponsored by the Agile Alliance and under the initiative initially raised by Kent McDonald and more recently by Ellen Gottesdiener. The organizers of the event contacted the Agile Alliance (via Shane Hastie) and asked us to run the Agile Open Jam at the conference.
As part of the Agile Extension initiative Shane Hastie, James King and Kent McDonald were already scheduled to be at the conference so it was seen as a natural add on to that initiative for us to conduct the Open Jam.
In addition to James, Kent & Shane additional volunteers included Kathy Berkidge, Michele Maritato, Stephanie Vineyard, Angela Wick and Jacqueline Sanders.
The Open Jam was located across from the registration area and next to the conference room where all the Agile sessions were held. This was a fairly high traffic area and every attendee at the conference had a chance to see the Open Jam area.
Over the 2 ½ days that the Open Jam was available approximately 100 people came and asked questions or engaged in conversation. Around 25 of those were deeper discussions that resulted in several pieces of wallware.
The timbre of the questions was focused on how to adopt agile practices in specific contexts rather than “should we be agile?” or “what is agile?”. It’s clear that agile software development approaches are the norm. The BA community now seems to struggle with the role of analysis and analysts in agile and there was a strong focus on the relationship with, and responsibilities of, product ownership. This appears to be a significant challenge for BAs in organizations and is something we will discuss in the Second Edition of the Agile Extension to the BABOK™.
The remainder of this document has photographs of the Open Jam sessions and the wallware produced.
We thank Agile Alliance for their support of this activity – it definitely helped engage the community and was beneficial to the brand of the Alliance.
Shane Hastie, James King and Kent McDonald
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