An Agile Firm Fixed-Price Contract

On February 1, 2017, I started as the Scrum Master on a Firm Fixed Price contract. We had a specific Scope of Work and a target end date. The planning team had reviewed the Scope and assessed the number of Scrum Teams we would need to complete the scope on or about January 7, 2018.

It’s now December of 2017 and we are on track to complete the project when we said we would while staying within our budget. We have already released some of the highest quality software I’ve had the pleasure of overseeing. The project goal is moving systems from a mainframe computer to a modern n-tier application. The end-users will have to get used to the new interface, but we all believe they will appreciate how much easier their jobs will be after they learn the new interface.

While leading this project I’ve learned some very important lessons.Over time I’m going to be sharing these lessons. Some are no brainers, although it’s been nice to have them reinforced. Some surprised me. I’ve learned lessons about people, agility, the customer, scope, quality, and tools. I’ll be sharing on all of these topics.

I’m still convinced that Scrum is the process that any organization should use to manage software development, and probably the rest of its projects. But Scrum is a framework that’s designed to flex to fit the needs of individual teams and specific projects. I’m not going to recommend a specific way to run Scrum. But I will tell you where and why we made adjustments, and I’ll share what I liked and what I didn’t about the choices we made.

All that I’ve learned will help me do a better job as I help more organizations embrace Agile and Scrum. I hope you’ll read along and share your own experiences.

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