Agile Manager [EOL] Review

It was easy to understand and provides a fairly user friendly, non-intimidating interface to new users. Resource allocation and management across multiple products needs work.


Valuable Features

The storyboard and dashboard are the easiest to use features as they perform daily tracking and show you where your project and release is at any point in time.

Improvements to My Organization

My team was transitioning to Agile methodology, and we had no real project management tool prior to HPE Agile Manager, although we used ALM for defect tracking. It was easy to understand and provides a fairly user friendly, non-intimidating interface to new users which prevented what could have been a high resistance to change.

Room for Improvement

Resource allocation and management across multiple products. We have the same resources working on multiple products each with their own releases, and Agile Manager does not handle this well, so the overloading or underloading of resources is difficult to monitor. The only way around this was to call each product an application within the same release cycle artificially in order to really track the allocation of resources and workloads.

ALI integration needs to be improved. We have some large multi-module projects and for the SVN and Jenkins servers we need to completely reset them up every release which is cumbersome, there should be an option to copy the configuration from one release to another for the ALI integration.

The dashboards are excellent views into the project but you cannot drill in or copy the graphs into a powerpoint or word document to provide a status synopsis. There are some long standing bugs on the storyboard that allow user stories or defects to be moved to the left rather than the right if people make a selection within the User Story or defect. It should provide a warning as if you have a lot of user stories it can be hard to find the ones reporting wrong.

For the integration with ALM, it is done via a user account rather than a system account so the history of change will reflect the integration account rather than the user that actually made the change. User accounts are managed by email address, this is an issue when a company changes domain as the account cannot be changed.

Use of Solution

I've been using it for two years.

Stability Issues

We had a few occasional issues but on the whole it has been very stable.

Scalability Issues

We've been able to scale it to our needs.

Customer Service and Technical Support

Support has been very good. They are responsive and very informed.

Previous Solutions

Previously, we did not use any tool for project management however we now have AGM (HPE) and RTC (IBM), AGM is much more user friendly and easy to configure but somewhat limited in its capabilities on larger projects or programs. RTC has many capabilities but you need a doctorate to set it up and to use it. As our environment grows, and if AGM does not handle the multiplication functionality in a better way or make it easier on the license management, we will have to likely move to RTC eventually.

Initial Setup

The initial set up was fairly easy. We use all aspects through code and build management along with an integration with a different defect management software. After one familiarization call I was able to set the whole system up in one day.

Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing

The price is reasonable and is a little more than some other online providers but still in-line. Licensing however is difficult to manage, as teams ramp up and ramp down the procurement process is difficult within organizations and I would hope be easier to setup and procure online. The support page makes it seem easy to get new licenses, but this a misnomer and you really need to contact the sales rep, get a quote generate a PO and get the licenses. There needs to be an easier way to order more licenses.

Other Solutions Considered

We did but we were looking for a very specific goal. We were transitioning a strongly functionally organized team to an Agile team and needed an easy to use tool to facilitate the transition and the learning of new behaviors. As a large enterprise we had in-house large enterprise tools but they were all too complex and intimidating to the users and I knew they would not use them. We then looked at the smaller online products for smaller teams (AGM, JIRA, etc.) to help with the transition.

Other Advice

Agile tools are great but first the organization must adopt and agile mindset to be successful. The product is really easy to use and manage single discrete projects with dedicated teams. Team members like it and are quickly able to customize the views to what they need to see to do their jobs. It is very fast on the setup and does not require a full time administrator or even a very technical resource to maintain it. It is a good tool for the project teams to not get bogged down in making sure status is right.

Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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