As per convention, a custom dictionary defines Agile as the ability to move quickly. In the equally conventional world of IT & Project Management, Agile refers to a methodology that is based on continuous development and deployment.
It promotes periodic inspection and proficient adaptation of new changes that are beneficial for an organization. It promotes teamwork, accountability, and self-organization such that high quality of work in less time is accomplished. A dual-impetus approach that not only fulfills the company goal but the customer needs simultaneously.
The Agile approach for software development is grossly adopted by an increasing number of businesses and organizations all across the world, that are transitioning from older more frigid methods. Software development is conducted using a number of methodologies, the most common of which are:
A waterfall model is an approach that follows a proper linear sequence in design. It includes steps like analysis, design, testing, and maintenance.
While Agile is an incremental approach to software design, it is structured in similar stages such as requirement, plan, design, development, release, and monitor, except each stage, is cross-functional, re-scalable and teams from all departments work collaboratively to share their work progress.
Recruiting an ideal software consultant, best suited to get the job done is not always an easy task. Software development companies are hiring an individual who is an expert in agile methodologies.
So, if a person wants to excel in Agile and Scrum then he/she must be ready to take on the challenges because the field is so vast that without detailed knowledge, a user won’t be able to excel.
So, a number of research papers, thesis, and courses are available like the Scrum Master Certification which enables the user to excel in these methodologies. It helps you become a Scrum master.
Scrum is a framework that includes customer collaboration, software development, and interactive tools which help a firm grow in terms of productivity, quality, cost-effectiveness, customer satisfaction, and motivation.
Benefits of Agile
A collaborative effort of stakeholders- Agile provides an opportunity for clients to work in iterations (before, during, and after). It produces the highest degree of collaboration between the stakeholder and the team. It benefits stakeholders as well as the team. Teams are able to understand the requirement as per the suggestions provided by the client and as a result, they gain trust and encouragement.
- Project Transparency – By following the agile approach, the client and the involved team are able to share the same platform. This platform helps the client to see the progress of the project anytime. The transparency of data enables them to set a development time and functionality cost.
- Predictions – Because of the fixed time interval of each sprint, the client can predict the estimated time of project completion. The estimation helps them to predict the cost of the project. Hence, Agile improves the decision-making process. Predictions of project completion also help in planning the delivery date and scheduling the date before early delivery.
- Freedom of change – The continuous task updating allows the team to prioritize the tasks. In this way, the new iterations and backlogs can be planned for the next sprint/iteration. Because of constant refinement in the sprint, the team gets updated about every process and hence, increases the work quality and business value.
- Improvement of Quality – Agile divides the work into different sprints such that every unit is manageable and of better quality. In every iteration, testing and reviews are done so that in the next iteration the previous errors do not repeat. Hence, the quality of the work is improved.
Traditional SDLC vs Agile SDLC
The primary difference between a traditional SDLC and an AGile SDLC is the sequence of phases. While traditional SDLC is linear, Agile includes short iterations.
Secondly, traditional SDLC tends to be more rigid when compared with the Agile approach. Project requirements are identified beforehand which makes the planning process more complex. Agile, on the other hand, offers enough room for incorporating changes during the cycle.
Traditional software development relies on detailed planning and prediction. Agile, on the other hand, allows for continuous improvements, offering better results and increased revenue.
Additionally, the traditional approach does not provide many opportunities for collaboration, and work is usually done in silos. Software development using Agile methodology, in contrast, is a collaborative effort with smooth communication between different teams across the organization.
Traditional methodology, although beneficial, is less efficient than Agile. When deciding between traditional SDLC vs agile SDLC, software development with Agile is a much better choice for teams that embrace consistent improvement and want to grow at a rapid pace.
Mitigating Risk in Software Development
There are different types of risks associated with software development in an organization.
Generally, risks are caused by poor planning, the inability of adapting the new changes and unachievable deadlines. While Productivity Risk is most common with projects that are too long, Personnel Risk is caused when any important team member is absent and which leads to a delay in project completion.
- Budget Risk – To overcome the situation of budgetary hindrances we need a rolling wave planning to cope with this type of risk. It includes the decisions related to the product when they are in the best position for planning instead of any type of detailed version at the beginning. Hence, planning allows you to make accurate decisions while developing the project. In this way, the budget risk can be managed because it doesn’t cost you much and you haven’t wasted time rescheduling the resources.
- Time Risk – Time risk can be coped with flexible and replicable processes. The Agile methodology involves quick and adapting processes. The continuous change through iteration helps the team to work rapidly in more formalized planning. This process helps the team to plan and predict the velocity of the project. Hence, they will be able to manage and mitigate the problem called time risk.
- Productivity Risk – The best alternative to reduce productivity risk is the implementation of Agile. The Agile methodology will divide the work into iterations, which enables robust and reliable assessment of project completion and delivery time. This allows the team to provide an actionable plan which is achievable with the best strategy.
- Personnel Risk – To overcome personal or knowledge risk, we need a group of people who have knowledge of the project. These people will involve in sharing their views, knowledge, and work culture which will help in mitigating the problems.
The number of people handling a certain task which helps them to cope with better strategy and continue the task, even when any team member is absent or on leave.
Final Words to Take Home
Agile offers various benefits to the organization. It helps in focusing on the pitfalls of the project such as cost, completion date, and changes in an efficient way. The implementation of agile eliminates the barrier in a more focused and leaner way.
Blog by Varun Dutta
Varun Dutta is an AI and ML expert and writes about the disruptive role of AI across the sectors. With his focus on the latest trends, he now explores the crypto world.