The AP (Associated Press) is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering, supplying a steady stream of news to its members, international subscribers and commercial customers.
Founded in 1846, AP has covered all the major news events of the past 165 years. Today, AP employs the latest technology to collect, create and distribute content. AP, which is headquartered in New York, operates in more than 280 locations worldwide.
The AP has been implementing Agile software delivery practices for several years. Agile has been widely adopted but the journey has been challenging at times as our development teams are located in different locations spanning across several continents and use a broad array of technologies.
We’ve been leveraging multiple tools for project planning, sprint and release management, backlog management and issue tracking. We are looking to consolidate these functions into a single platform where we can perform all Agile-related tasks. Yodiz has helped one of our development teams achieve this consolidation, and we’re evaluating it for broader adoption in the near future.
We were using several different tools to manage development and internal processes. Agile is all about improving efficiency and reducing waste so we were eager to explore solutions that could allow us to perform all our Agile-related tasks in a single environment.
We evaluated proprietary and open source solutions. Yodiz ranked highly for its ability to provide a centralized environment to manage all of our work. Yodiz also provides robust project planning, sprint and release management, backlog management, issue tracking and team management and collaboration functions. Yodiz also integrates well with many other platforms like Google, Git, etc. which were important criteria to consider.
We found Yodiz to be feature-rich and intuitive. Robert provided the team with a one hour overview of the tool, no formal user training was required. Yodiz support was also responsive during the adoption process. Most of our questions were quickly addressed via Yodiz’s online knowledge base.
Yodiz provides a much greater degree of visibility into our team’s progress. The dashboards ensure that everyone is working from the same consolidated view and provide full visibility into the work that is being done.
Yodiz has also simplified collaboration by centralizing Agile artifacts in a single platform.
Yodiz notifications help inform team members when updates or changes to specific tasks are completed. It also notifies task owners when people comment, ask questions or provide attachments to activities. The tool compliments our daily calls and project meetings in an efficient manner.
Yodiz has many useful features. One of the most convenient features is the ability for our team to pull in documents and resources located in different locations like Box, Gdrive, Dropbox and local hard drives. The reporting and dashboards are also another area where we want to broaden our use around. The snapshot view they provide is great for reporting to management.
Yodiz provides excellent customer support. Our questions and feedback were promptly handled by the Yodiz support team. We also made requests for new features and enhancements. Yodiz prioritized these requests based on our feedback and placed them in their delivery roadmap.
Our team has finished several sprints using the tool. Yodiz has helped us streamline our workflow and has increased our overall efficiency. Our team accomplishes most work via the new Yodiz views so we eagerly await the production release of this functionality.
We plan to utilize Yodiz analytic features such as velocity, burn-down graphs in the very near future. We expect to get additional value by leveraging these features to improve our overall reporting, sprint management and backlog planning. We’re happy with our selection of Yodiz and look forward to more features in 2015 and beyond.