Atlassian Team Tour

Wessel Donkervoort

Wessel Donkervoort

Atlassian Expert & Agile Consultant

Published: 19 February, 2018

It's with excitement and enthusiasm that we started setting up our table at the Compagnietheater, a beautifully chosen location in the heart of Amsterdam to kick off the 2018 Team Tour. We had prepared about 300 Avisi branded Tony Chocolonely chocolate bars for all attendees, including a wrapper with a discount for our Atlassian trainings. Although we slightly underestimated the weight of moving around all this chocolate, and the effort needed in placing it on every seat in the main theatre, it was totally worth it!

We were looking forward to a packed (half) day with interesting talks and good opportunities to catch up with familiar faces and of course, for meeting new people!.

While the registration at the entrance of the event was creating a fairly big queue, the presentations started with minimal delay. Dominic Price from Atlassian was the host of the event and quickly he announced the first speaker.

Jay Simons, Atlassian

The first big announcement that Jay Simons made was the introduction of Atlassian Home. Home brings users a cross application dashboard which can show highlights and a feed of all connected applications.

There is also a possibility of searching cross platform which can be very handy if you are not sure if you read a certain piece of information in Jira, Confluence or maybe even Stride.

Speaking of Stride; we got to see some of the features and we saw the integration with Trello for remote standups, which was actually pretty cool.

A few new features that are coming to Jira:

• More empowerment to the project admins in which they can add custom fields and change workflows themselves.

• In the future you will be able to restructure and rename priorities per project.

• A smart @-mention functionality is coming which will make life easier for Jira users with large user tiers.

Ashmi Chokshi, Atlassian

After a short break in which everybody could enjoy some Tony Chocolonely's the stage was given to Ashmi Chokshi.

For the first time, Atlassian is providing native Bitbucket integration support with a third-party application which is loved by the DevOps community: Jenkins! A free and open source build agent, comparable to Atlassian Bamboo.

Further, as an Agile at Scale enthusiast I was thrilled to hear that Portfolio for Jira was getting functionality to give planned start and end dates. This way you can easily plan ahead by (what seemed like) dragging and dropping start and end dates in the Portfolio timeline. Although it looked like the demo was done from a cloud environment, it is expected to reach server sometime soon.

Data Center will be given some interesting updates such as app monitoring. This functionality can notify admins before a real issue takes place. Also there will be (real) project archiving coming to Data Center.

Dennis Struis & Ronald Koster, ABN Amro

Then there was a rather interesting talk from Dennis Struis and Ronald Koster about how they do agile at scale within ABN Amro.

They explained how they made their hierarchy starting from the bottom with a Story which is picked up in a “block”, which goes up to an EPIC which is still in a block. Going above that we have an Episode which live in Grids (multiple blocks) and above that we got the Saga. The Saga oversees the whole Business Line.

Hubert Kut, e-Bay

In this talk Hubert Kut gave us an insight on how he automated the onboarding process within e-Bay. We watched this with quite some interest and we have to say; if you thought this was an interesting subject or if you even want to do something similar yourself; we have built something like this within our own environment and for customers using Riada’s Insight.

Stay tuned for more about that!

Dominic Price, Atlassian

Before we would go to the Q/A panel, there was the last talk of the day given by Dominic Price himself. His talk about the Atlassian Playbook was both amusing and interesting. The Playbook can be used by everybody (it is free and online) who wants to take his or her team to the next level. We encourage everybody to take a look!

Final thoughts

When all the talks were over there were drinks & bites and of course some socializing to do! I enjoyed all three of them and I have to say that I noticed that a lot of people were interested in scaling agile. A lot of questions in particularly were about Portfolio for Jira.

We are happy to say that we have added Portfolio for JIRA to the list of trainings we offer to our customers. So if you want to master this piece of software which Atlassian is updating and adding new features to constantly, please don’t hesitate to contact us!

Btw; if Portfolio for Jira doesn’t cut it and you need more control of even ways to have your SAFe 4.5 process structures in Jira; we have started a partnership with Software Tree which are the makers of BigPicture. Contact us if you want more information on that.


Around 7PM in the evening everybody was on their way home. So there was nothing else for us to do besides getting some burgers with the team before we all went home.

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