Epics are considered as containers intended for important initiatives which would help in guiding value streams through larger aim of a portfolio. In doing so, they would drive more of the economic value for a certain enterprise. They are as well considered to be large and commonly crosscutting at the same time crossing numbers of value streams and also ARTs or the Agile Release Trains. They are also investment intensive as well as far ranging in impact like formulation as well as analysis of impact, cost and opportunity as a serious matter. And Epics as well need lightweight business case as well as financial approval prior to implementation. The two types of epics are enabler epics and business epics and are to appear in the value stream, portfolio and program levels.
Portfolio business epics and Enabler epics are considered as the largest epics that would capture that biggest crosscutting initiative which happen in a portfolio. Business epics are to bring business value directly while enabler epics are utilised in order to evolve the Architectural Runway therefore supporting the upcoming business epics. So, epics are captured initially within the Portfolio Kanban and would move into the system under WIP limits or the work-in-process. And this would help in reassuring that the ones doing the work would have some time needed in order to conduct a responsible analysis.
In connection, Kanban system is about helping manage the expectations intended for reasonable scoping as well as time frames intended for implementing the new ideas of a certain business. The final decision as for the actual implementation of every epic would be subjected into the authority of the PPM or Program Portfolio Management. Once resources are available, those decision makers could now choose from the numbers of business opportunities for there would be numbers of analysed epics within the backlog any time. And the epics that are being approved would proceed to Portfolio Backlog, waiting for the implementation capacity.
Epics are indeed the most important initiatives in a portfolio that’s why they should be analysed carefully prior to the implementation. The owners of epic should also take into responsibility for the said important task at the same time the architects of the enterprise would shepherd the enabler epics which support the technical considerations for the business epics. Those most worthy epics would be passed to analysis once space would become available within that queue. And from there, effort as well as economic impact are defined a lot better, cost estimates are as well established, WSJF prioritization would be refined and also lightweight business case will be developed.
Some of the things included in the analysis would be the following:
• Workshops along with business stakeholders for the purpose of describing and understanding the business benefits of the business epic
• Implementing spikes, exploration and research activities through teams
• Define the success criteria for the epic
• Workshops for architects as well as system engineering right from value stream and program levels and to the agile team allowing them to understand the implementation of the impact and effort in recent solutions and also some other related SMEs could be included
• Develop concrete examples in order to resolve certain ambiguities
And the result of the said analysis phase would be a lightweight business case which captures the results of the analysis such as refined description, estimates of time and cost of implementation, success criteria and also program impact.