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Initiative in Project Management

cplace Glossary

What is an Initiative?

An Initiative is an Agile Project Management tool. It is used for complex projects in which several teams are involved. The use of Initiatives enables teams to implement projects in a structured and flexible manner.
Initiatives play an important role in agile project management methods. They refer to the ability and willingness of team members to identify problems and find solutions without having to rely on instructions from superiors. A well-known framework method in which Initiatives are used is Scrum.

Initiative in Agile Project Management

What does an Initiative consist of?

An Initiative refers to a level of organization. It consists of several “Epics”, which in turn are made up of several “Stories”, also known as “User Stories“. A Story describes a requirement from the perspective of the end user. In contrast, an “Epic” represents a larger requirement. Epics and Stories are therefore superordinate to Initiatives.

In Agile Project Management, “Agile Epics” are used to summarize several requirements in one “Epic”. This allows team members to make decisions and develop solutions independently, enabling them to work faster and more effectively, which in turn contributes to end user satisfaction. Initiatives are therefore a decisive factor for the success of agile projects.


What is the time frame of an initiative?

An Initiative often includes “Epics” from several teams and has a larger goal. Accordingly, more time is needed to complete an Initiative. The time frame often spans several quarters to a whole year. In comparison, epics can be completed in a period of one to three months.


The advantages of Initiatives, Epics and Stories

  • Efficiency
  • Structure
  • Flexibility
  • Time saving
  • Focus on main goal(s)
  • Independence of individual teams
  • Saving resources
  • Performance tracking

Related terms: EpicScrum, TaskUser Story

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