My morning sessions for day three were dominated by Team Foundation Server.  This has been a hot topic for our clients lately, so this topic really stuck a chord.

The speaker for the first session was from Boeing.  It was nice to hear how how a company mixes both agile and waterfall project management.   The approaches that he presented were very pragmatic.  For their needs reporting is the crucial part of their decision to use TFS.  This was interesting since this is probably the last aspect that most shops would think about.

The challenge of getting users to adopt TFS was brought up by the audience.  As with the other discussion point he took a very level headed stance.  The approach he was prescribing was to eat the elephant a bite at a time instead of all at once.  If you try to convert you entire shop at once the culture shock will most likely kill the effort.

Another key point he reminded us of is that you need to make sure that standards and compliance are taken into account when you setup TFS.  If you don’t implement a tool and processes around it that comply with the standards bodies that govern your business you are in for a world of hurt.

Ultimately the reason they chose TFS was because it was the first tool that incorporated all the ALM features that they needed. Reduced licensing cost because of all the different tools they would need to buy to complete the same tasks.  They got to this point by doing an industry evaluation.  Although TFS came out on top he said that it still has a big gap is in the Java area.  Of course in this market there are vendors helping to close that gap.

The second session was on how continuous feedback in agile is a new focus in VS2012.  The problems they intended to address included cycle time and average time to repair, root cause analysis.

The speakers fired features at us as if they were firing a machine gun.  I will just say that I am looking forward to digging into the product after seeing this presentation.  Beyond that I will simply list some of the key features that caught my attention.

Feature –

  1. Ability to link documents into tasks as artifacts
  2. Web access portal
  3. PowerPoint storyboards
  4. Exploratory testing
  5. Request feedback (allows users to record notes, screen shots and video/audio)

See you after the second half.