How PI Planning Makes Your Business More Efficient?

Many product teams and agile facilitators use PI Planning to align and bring groups together around a common goal.

Although PI Planning is supposed to be done in person, teams now do it remotely due to increased hybrid work.

A PI Planning Template provides a comprehensive overview of your PI Planning event, along with step-by-step frames to take you through the entire process.

What Is PI Planning?

PI Planning is the abbreviation for Program Increment Planning. Teams inside the same Agile Release Train (ART) gather regularly throughout the year for PI Planning sessions.

These align them to a single vision, discuss features, plan the roadmap, and identify cross-team dependencies.

What Is A PI Planning Event And How Does It Work?

Every major event necessitates thorough planning. PI Planning, according to SAFe, unites all teams on the Agile Release Train (ART) around the same objective and vision. Teams and managers can meet and interact for around two days during this event.

It used to be so vital for overseas teams to be physically present at PI Planning gatherings that they would arrange long-haul flights to assemble in one place and chat with one another.

Here are the critical components of PI Planning:

  • Every 8-12 weeks, two full-day events are held (depending on the length of your increments)
  • Development teams own user story planning and estimating
  • Engineers and UX teams work to validate the planning
  • The goal is to connect the teams to the mission and each other
  • Everyone participates in person (if feasible)
  • Technology is used to allow dispersed teams to participate (if needed)

If you’re new to SAFe, you are likely to begin with PI Planning.

Recommendations For Scattered Teams In PI Planning

If your teams cannot meet for PI Planning every quarter, you should consider hosting a remote PI Planning template.

Here are a few pointers to get you started:

Co-locate

Co-locate teams as feasible rather than having everyone tune in from different faraway locations.

You may establish a central headquarters for the leadership team and neighboring teams and then fly distributed personnel to their remote site. Everyone still gets some face-to-face collaboration this way.

Broadcast Live Online

Face-to-face communication is preferable, but if that isn’t possible, live streaming audio and video from the event and participants is the next best thing. 

As a result, any remote or distributed teams will need to be encouraged to use their cameras and microphones during the event. It’s not quite the same as being in the same room as them, but it’s close.

Record It

In an ideal world, everyone will engage in PI Planning in real-time. However, whether your team is spread across several time zones or a few team members are unable to attend on the day due to illness or other reasons, it’s a good idea to film the event as well.

Additionally, having a tape to look to could benefit those who need a reminder on anything discussed.

Accept The Cloud

Allow your team to view and interact with information as soon as possible, if not in real-time, by using online shared planning tools.

Ensuring that everyone has quick access to the information makes it easier to map cross dependencies and eliminates the need to store data in tens of different places.

Adapt With Time Zones

Some teams will adjust the typical PI Planning schedule to accommodate multiple time zones.

This might entail starting the event sooner or later or running it across three days rather than two.

Make The Rules

Too much noise and interference are common problems when scattered teams connect remotely via video and audio.

Before starting your first session, discuss when it’s okay to chat and when teams use the mute button instead.

Your teams will be less distracted as a result, and everyone will be able to contribute.

PI Planning’s Inputs And Outputs

Pl planning takes into account the following factors (inputs)!

  • Business context (see ‘content ready’ below)
  • Roadmap and vision
  • Top 10 Program Backlog Features

Here are two significant outcomes (outputs) that emerge from a successful Pl planning template:

  • Committed PI Objectives – A set of SMART objectives developed by each team in conjunction with the Company Owners’ business value.
  • Program Board – highlighting new feature delivery dates, team feature dependencies, and important Milestones.

Key Takeaways

“The most efficient and successful technique of transmitting knowledge to and within a development team is a face-to-face dialogue,” according to the Agile Manifesto. With Pl planning, SAFe takes this to the next level.

Physical collocation is used whenever practicable, and large-scale Pl planning events are now held in many companies worldwide.

They’ve demonstrated a clear financial return on investment, not to mention the intangibles that emerge when a group of agile teams builds a social structure that is both personally and collectively fulfilling.