Overview of Agile Team Structure
An agile team is a small group of tech, business, and inventor people who work on the same project in a small company/start-up. The people in a group are sometimes distributed through a contractor, freelancer or part-time based job which can minimize the financial requirement & increase the profit for the company. As in this topic, we are going to learn about Agile Team Structure.
The team required every kind of people, there should a technical guy or can say a program for the IT Company, business development guy for setting up the meeting with potential clients, inventors to increase the shares of the company, an accountant for filing taxation, returns, bookkeeping, etc.
Roles & responsibilities sometimes do not matter as anytime, if required a tech guy can handle the logistic part or a sales guy can work on accounting & investors to work getting the clients for the company.
Agile Team Roles
In the agile team, everyone should be responsible for task & expertise in his/her areas, here are the following Agile team roles:
- Team Lead: The team lead manages & provide the resources the team needs. He ensures that the team members are protected from office politics, he manages everyone & is responsible for giving the right suggestion to the team so the team makes an effective decision regarding product validation, quality, cost, etc. related to the product, similarly for business development, he/she advises the team to find the right lead & make a profit for the company.
- Product Owner: The person who owns the product & mainly responsible for any change or defect to the product. These people are representing the interests of clients, shareholders, customers & work after knowing their interest work on the project according to their requirements of the customer/clients they work upon.
- Team Member: This includes every member who is working on the same project & not only specialized in their skill only but can also help others as a testing guy can help programmer if required & vice-versa & same for other members of the team.
Structure of an Agile Team
There are generally 5 agile team structures that could be used while making a team for a company.
1. Generalist Team: As the name suggests, the team works effectively on the given project & the people involved in the team are well diverse in every kind of role.
However, the challenge for this team is finding the right person to work as a team rather than an employee & very few people are well trained in adopting the different roles within the team. Like not every member of the team is good in tax saving or filing tax returns or a data protection specialist.
If the project is small & so the team, then the expertise in any domain is not the very requirement, the only requirement is the passionate people who want to work in different roles.
2. Domain Specialist Agile Team: In this team, everyone is specialized in their domain & has a different skillset. This gives the team a highly skilled programmer, tester, product developer, Business developer, etc. because the people doing these work are well trained in those areas.
However, it might be difficult for this type of team at the time when there is no task for them & you might end up with the waste of the resources.
The specialized team is more effective for the bigger team’s size of more than 15-20 members, unlike the generalist team. In his team also the team can minimize the time of their work by getting trained in their respective domains to reduce the overall time required for the project.
3. Transition in Agile Team: This is another form of the team. There are times when the team is required to transfer some of them when the team member is set to change the way of working & adopt a new method to increase the productivity & changing the working method is a learning curve. You get to start thinking differently than your old method & doing the same thing for a period of time.
4. Sub-Team in Agile Team: Sub-team could be in any domain & depends upon how big the organization is. In big organizations, there are sub-teams for different domains. The product development team consists of the testing team, programming team, backend, front end, testing team, etc. similarly in business development sales, partnerships, relationships, etc. are the sub-teams to manage a large number of works.
5. Swapping in Agile Team: In this team structure, everyone changes their jobs. Everyone develops a product then everyone moves to test it. This type of structure requires training as well as motivation to cross-function in the team.
Challenges in Agile Team
In an Agile team, there is some drawback of adopting this structure in an organization.
- It is difficult to get a diverse working team & since most of the people like to work in their domain so it is difficult to get the right person to fit into the team.
- If the team doesn’t fit in the above five structures then it is better to break the agile & make team lead to make it work as an organization.
- The agile team structure is good only for a small team, it is good to have several working teams. Building a team leads to manage the team of the domain.
A real example is from my company, where the people hired for, are every time not only doing their core job but are also required to switch to other domain when required like a product development guy took the responsibility to handle logistic & operation as their core job including his main task. So the agile team should be prepared for the additional task they are asked to do to support their company when required.
An agile team is the best working team for the small organization but at the same time, it is also challenging to get the right person to adopt a diverse role when required for the organization. There are different structures explained above and how big organizations can make different teams & when required the team members can contribute to the other roles to avoid the loss of resources for the organization.
This has been a guide to Agile Team Structure. Here we discuss the Roles, Challenges, and the Top 5 Structures of the Agile Team. You can also go through our other suggested articles –