Posts by Mike Adler

Our SCRUM Metrics

Here we are, rolling out SCRUM across our teams, having teams practice the process and deliver customer value.  We needed to figure out a simple way to measure the effectiveness of our rollout.  Measuring the effectiveness has two parts: Part 1 How effective were we in changing team behaviors, making our team members and product […]

SCRUM – It’s the Team and Teamwork

As we have continued to rollout SCRUM into our organization I have been reminded how important team behaviors are for the success of SCRUM teams. It seems so simple at 50,000 feet. We employ great engineers; they are all nice people, why won’t this just work?  The reality is something far more difficult to achieve. […]

SCRUM and RACI

As we have been putting SCRUM into the organization, it has me thinking about how to help the teams understand roles and responsibilities in the new SCRUM formation.  We use RACI (defined below) internally to help dictate everyone’s understanding of who makes which decisions and why. One of the best articles on the subjects of […]

Losing the Trees through the Forest

I have written a number of articles for this blog about our adoption of the SAFe framework for scaling Agile. However, it became obvious in late 2014 that we had a fundamental problem. No matter how well we did release planning, epic prioritization, or release trains, it wasn’t getting us where we need to go. […]

From Idea to Production: Steps to Creating and Consuming APIs

Mike Adler, Constant Contact VP Engineering, discusses the history of APIs, and best practices that developers need to consider when building or consuming APIs. Mike made this presentation at the 2014 Ultimate Developer Event. Share your thoughts on what goes into building a world-class API, or, what you need from an API as a developer […]

Managing Technical and UX Debt

Constant Contact recently released one of our first release planned and executed with the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe), known externally as our Toolkit release.  There will  be a future post about some of the lessons learned from that experience, We see  major release as an opportunity to do a retrospective on our process. This post […]

Organizing for Quality with Agile Teams

I have been writing for the last several months about our adoption of the Scaled Agile Framework at Constant Contact.   However, I was recently challenged to think about a more core Agile question of how to best organize and manage our Quality Engineers.  Working through organizational structure as a leader within an organization is always […]

When to Use the Agile Release Train

[Editor’s note: This post about using the Agile Release Train is the third is a series of posts by Mike Adler chronicling the Constant Contact engineering organization’s journey of transitioning to the SAFe Framework.] As an organization that develops world-class SaaS software, we want to leverage the benefits of Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery processes.  […]

How Many X Should We Have?

In my last blog post I described our engineering organization and our selection of the Scaled Agile Framework to help us organize our Agile engineering teams.  Throughout the last month, we have been socializing and teaching the Epic/Feature/Story hierarchy to the product organization.  As part of this rollout, one of the transitions that we have […]

Scaling a Great Engineering Organization with SAFe

This year we’ve begun to adopt the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) at Constant Contact to help us structure our product, business, and architectural efforts so that our organizational and business growth scales effectively. Great engineering organizations build great products. However, building a great engineering organization and keeping it executing for the business is never easy. Constant […]