Recall that in the previous note we talked about agile work cells. This is a way of organizing work similar to that of a living cell, reflecting its dynamism. In this environment, interdisciplinary and collaborative work is promoted, where each member of the cell contributes to the achievement of the objectives, always focused on the customer.
With respect to the roles that make up this type of cell, they generally represent different areas and disciplines, all of which are necessary to respond to the problems that led to the formation of the cell. In particular, a Product Owner is usually included, who maintains the vision of the final product and transmits it to all those involved, seeking to ensure that in each sprint the product is being adapted to the needs of the end user. He/she must also have interpersonal skills since he/she is in charge of interacting with all the actors involved in the project.
The Scrum Master is another role present in agile cells and acts as a facilitator, accompanying the process and seeking to ensure that the principles of the agile methodology are followed. His mission is to ensure the availability of the development team, eliminating obstacles that may arise and potentially affect the delivery of the product under the agreed terms. His skills at a strategic level, his ability to manage teamwork, and above all his problem-solving skills are important.
Of course, the Development Team, whose mission is fundamentally to develop the product, working in small teams where information is shared openly and a collaborative spirit reigns, cannot be missing. There may also be other roles, such as Front End Developer, Back End Developer, Machine Learning specialists, UX Designer, among others.
Despite the many advantages of agile work cells, there can also be certain drawbacks during their development. Some of them are mainly associated with the lack of experience of the team, when these cells are entirely made up of junior members. In this case, the creation of agile work cells mentored by a figure with a high level of seniority is a very interesting tool. In this way, even when the client hires a cell made up of junior profiles and the fees reflect this, having a senior profile in charge of acting as a mentor raises the quality of the deliverable product. This is because the mentor guides the group of junior members and also reviews their deliverables.
Another disadvantage to be avoided when working in agile cells is the lack of quality controls. In this sense, the eagerness to reduce development times to a minimum can lead to quality failures and ultimately to problems with the client. The role of a mentor with a high level of seniority can also contribute to avoiding this type of problems by guiding and reviewing the work developed by the team. These mentors provide their knowledge, tools, training and coaching to make the most of the team’s potential, but the most important thing is the experience they bring to a group of junior professionals. Their skills include not only technical skills, which are fundamental, but also interpersonal skills such as empathy, communication, patience and problem solving.
At Macrotest we have agile work cells and also mentored cells, where projects developed by junior professionals go to the next level thanks to the senior mentoring process, pursuing the highest quality standards.
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