Information Flows at Inter-team Boundaries in Agile Information Systems Development

  • Scarlet RahyEmail author
  • Julian Bass
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Business Information Processing book series (LNBIP, volume 341)


Agile software development methods are being used on larger projects thus the study of inter-team communication are becoming an important topic of interest for researchers. This research addresses inter-team communication by exploring the tools and three different boundaries, inter-team, team and customers, and geographically separated teams. In this research, we gathered data from semi-structured face-to-face interviews which were analyzed following the grounded theory approach. Our study reveals consensus from different teams on the importance of virtual Kanban boards. Also, some team members tend to adapt to other teams’ preferred communication tool. We observed challenges around interdependent user stories among the different teams and highlighted the problems that rise at the different boundaries.


Agile information system development Inter-team communication Agile team boundary Communication Agile methods Cooperating agile teams 


  1. 1.
    Aebert, C.: Global Software and IT: A Guide to Distributed Development, Projects, and Outsourcing. Ringgold Inc., Portland (2012)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Adolph, S., Hall, W., Kruchten, P.: Using grounded theory to study the experience of software development. Empirical Softw. Eng. 16(4), 487–513 (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Alahyari, H., Svensson, R.B., Gorschek, T.: A study of value in agile software development organizations. J. Syst. Softw. 125, 271–288 (2017)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Rani, A., Vodanovish, S., Sundaram, D.: Ubiquitous decision making and SUpport: a framework and evaluation. In: European, Mediterranean & Middle Eastern Conference on Information Systems 2015, 1st–2nd June 2015 (2015)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Bass, J.M.: How product owner teams scale agile methods to large distributed enterprises. Empirical Softw. Eng. 20(6), 1525–1557 (2015)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Beck, K., et al.: Manifesto for agile software development (2001)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Boschetti, M.A., Golfarelli, M., Rizzi, S., Turricchia, E.: A Lagrangian heuristic for sprint planning in agile software development. Comput. Oper. Res. 43, 116–128 (2014)MathSciNetCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Campanelli, A.S., Parreiras, F.S.: Agile methods tailoring – a systematic literature review. J. Syst. Softw. 110, 85–100 (2015)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Collabnet and VersionOne: The 12th Annual State of Agile Report: Long Term Servey. VersionOne, Atlanta (2018)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Dingsøyr, T., Moe, N., Fægri, T., Seim, E.: Exploring software development at the very large-scale: a revelatory case study and research agenda for agile method adaptation. Empirical Softw. Eng. 23(1), 490–520 (2018)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Dingsøyr, T., Nerur, S., Balijepally, V., Moe, N.B.: A decade of agile methodologies: towards explaining agile software development (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Doolin, B.: Sociomateriality and boundary objects in information systems development. Eur. J. Inf. Syst. 21(5), 570–586 (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Drury, M., Conboy, K., Power, K.: Obstacles to decision making in Agile software development teams. J. Syst. Softw. 85(6), 1239–1254 (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Dyba, T., Dingsoyr, T.: What do we know about agile software development? IEEE Softw. 26(5), 6–9 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Herbsleb, J.D., Moitra, D.: Global software development. IEEE Softw. 18(2), 16–20 (2001)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Hoda, R., Noble, J., Marshall, S.: Developing a grounded theory to explain the practices of self-organizing Agile teams. Empirical Softw. Eng. 17(6), 609–639 (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Hoda, R., Noble, J., Marshall, S.: Self-organizing roles on agile software development teams. IEEE Trans. Softw. Eng. 39(3), 422–444 (2013)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Jovanovic, M., Mesquida, A.L., Mas, A.: Process improvement with retrospective gaming in agile software development. In: O’Connor, R., Umay Akkaya, M., Kemaneci, K., Yilmaz, M., Poth, A., Messnarz, R. (eds.) EuroSPI 2015. CCIS, vol. 543, pp. 287–294. Springer, Cham (2015). Scholar
  19. 19.
    Lindvall, M., et al.: Empirical findings in agile methods. In: Wells, D., Williams, L. (eds.) XP/Agile Universe 2002. LNCS, vol. 2418, pp. 197–207. Springer, Heidelberg (2002). Scholar
  20. 20.
    Nerur, S., Mahapatra, R., Mangalaraj, G.: Challenges of migrating to agile methodologies. Commun. ACM 48(5), 72–78 (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Patton, M.Q.: Qualitative Research and Evaluation Methods, 3rd edn. SAGE, London (1945, 2002)Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Petersen, K., Roos, P., Nyström, S., Runeson, P.: Early identification of bottlenecks in very large scale system of systems software development. J. Softw.: Evol. Process 26(12), 1150–1171 (2014)Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Poppendieck, M.: Lean Software Development: An Agile Toolkit. Addison-Wesley, London, Boston (2003)Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Praby, R., Roland, W.: Can agile processes prevent spectacular information systems development failures. In: European, Mediterranean & Middle Eastern Conference on Information Systems EMCIS 2016, 23rd–24th June 2016 (2016)Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Santos, V., Goldman, A., de Souza, C.: Fostering effective inter-team knowledge sharing in agile software development. Empirical Softw. Eng. 20(4), 1006–1051 (2015)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Šmite, D., Moe, N.B., Šablis, A., Wohlin, C.: Software teams and their knowledge networks in large-scale software development. Inf. Softw. Technol. 86, 71–86 (2017)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Stray, V., Sjøberg, D.I.K., Dybå, T.: The daily stand-up meeting: a grounded theory study. J. Syst. Softw. 114, 101–124 (2016)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Vaivio, J.: Interviews – Learning the Craft of Qualitative Research Interviewing. Routledge, London (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Yoo, Y.: The dynamics of IT boundary objects, information infrastructures, and organisational identities: the introduction of 3D modelling technologies into the architecture, engineering, and construction industry. Eur. J. Inf. Syst. 17(3), 290–304 (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Computing, Science and EngineeringUniversity of SalfordManchesterUK

Personalised recommendations