Agile Software Methodology

agile software methodologyReasons for Implementing Change to an Agile Software Methodology

When it comes to implementing a strategic approach to a software development project, it’s possible for a company to be content with a methodology that produces a good product rather than a great product.  Familiarity and comfort may inhibit a company’s desire to approach a project with a different methodology.  Resistance is an inevitable element when it comes to implementing change, especially in the world of software development.  To understand some of the benefits of using an agile software methodology may ultimately help a company welcome the change needed to produce great custom software.

In traditional software development projects, the waterfall approach provides a team with a linear process where development stages are carried out sequentially until the end product is finished.  Only after one stage is complete, can the team move forward to the next. Fixing problems or glitches that are discovered during the final stage of the process can be both time consuming and difficult.  While the traditional waterfall approach may be the most familiar method for some software developers, implementing an agile software methodology may make it easier for a software development team to produce great end products.

Reasons for Encouraging Change to an Agile Software Methodology

When it comes to making a decision on whether or not to implement a new strategic approach to software development, there are many considerations involved. The agile software methodology has many unique aspects that make it worth considering. Follow along to learn how the agile approach to custom software can produce a great, rather than good, end product.

  1. Iterations – With the agile software methodology, developers work in short iterations commonly known as “sprints.” During these iterations, developers are able to test for glitches and have the capability to fix them before moving onto the next sprint. Debugging software along the way leads to a better final product with fewer problems.
  2. Collaboration – During an agile development project, there is close collaboration between team members, product managers, scrum masters and stakeholders. Collaboration ensures that all team members are on the same page during the project and allows the team to be flexible and adaptive to stakeholder requests.
  3. Communication – Daily meetings, often referred to as “scrums,” are pivotal to the agile software methodology. During daily meetings, the software development team discusses the product backlog and any impediments that may hinder production.  Communication between all members of this cross-functional team is highly encouraged. Daily meetings and regular communication throughout the project helps the team form a cohesive unit working towards a common goal.
  4. Efficiency – The flexible nature of the agile approach to software development facilitates efficiency in terms of both time and money. Debugging and testing at the end of iterations keeps the team from having to go back and fix unforeseen problems.  Getting the job done right the first time saves stakeholders from having to spend extra money making desired changes, which may also extend a project past the deadline.

Skepticism is natural when it comes to implementing change, especially when many members of a software development team feel content with the familiar methods used in the past.  It’s important to keep in mind though that facilitating change to an agile software methodology could take an end product from good to great. Understanding some of the benefits of an agile software methodology ultimately helps a company to evaluate the risks involved in making the change. Implementing a new software development methodology like agile could be the change your company needs to take a product to the next level of greatness.