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What is Agile Software Development & Methodology?

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We had the Waterfall method of Software development which was so powerful once upon a time. The world evolves and so does methods to live and practice. Agile project management evolved as a practice to develop any product or service to its maximum level not even knowing where the end is.

Confusing isn’t? The traditional methods of Software development take years to develop as per the plan, process, procedure and finally show it to the user. Imagine, if there is a method which can show a difference every day, every week which is ultimately what is required by the customers makes it the best in the world.

The traditional methods (waterfall) were focusing on the employees, stakeholders and he projects itself keeping a speculative guess on what a customer wants. Agile works on reality and no guesses here. Agile looks at what is required by the people and offer it. It is a change or evolution from thinking on US and putting the customer first. A simple change and massive results.

Agile Software development:

Agile Software development is an improvement of a product based on customer feedback. Agile Software development involves 4 key elements, and this can never be bypassed at any time during the planning or execution.

  1. Employee interaction
  2. A comprehensive working software
  3. Customer connect and collaboration
  4. Calculated response to the change

Agile Software development is adventurous as you may have to change very fast and upgrade or update or remove any functionality from a product or a service. Find more at https://softteco.com/blog/user-stories-versus-use-cases

There are certain principles that Agile Software Development follows.

  1. The priority is to satisfy customers at any point in time through continuous delivery
  2. The change in the requirements must be graciously welcomed
  3. Working software must be delivered frequently without any timeframe intervals, it can be 2 days, 2 weeks or 2 months
  4. The collaboration of developers and stakeholders must happen every day
  5. The project developers must be highly motivated, the support and environment required must be given to them
  6. Regular meetings – Face to face is inevitable
  7. The working product as it goes higher is the measure of success
  8. The sustainable development shall happen, and the stakeholders, developers must work in a consistent pace
  9. Attention to technical excellence marks beauty to the product
  10. Being Simple in gaining feedback is essential
  11. Self-organizing teams must be set up
  12. The team must meet at regular intervals to tune themselves to create more impact on the product
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11th guideline is a phenomenal aspect of Agile Software development.

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The teams will function independently and, they are cross-functional. This means to say that, all the team members will have all the right skill sets required and do not have specific roles as such. There can be a lead or manager. His/her role is to ensure that his team is motivated, select candidates with the right skill sets and ensuring the team members acquire the right skill sets. Mostly the lead shall be the back fiddle and allows the team to work on the product and also to make clinical decisions.

Thought the team is self-organized, collaboration is the key for Agile software development. It is like everyone does every many things, but in synchronization to attain the ultimate result. An adventurous Fusion Dance.

People often confuse Agile Software development with Scrum, Extreme Programming or Future Driven development.

Agile is a blanket of all, an umbrella, a nest housing a lot of concepts and frameworks. In Agile Software development, there will be a lot of teams involved. Every team will have different ideologies and methodologies which will be totally different from other teams. The methodologies or the ideologies used by every team is named as ‘FRAMEWORKS’ and those frameworks are Scrum, FDD and the like.

These frameworks have definite practices and that must be followed to be consistent with the framework.

Scrum is most often used to manage a very complex product or software development. It utilizes incremental practices through iterative methods. Scrum is the need for the business which undergoes and faces rapid changes. It smoothens the process and also delivers qualified products in a timely fashion to the customers.

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A Scrum Process can help the company in the following ways

  1. The quality of the deliverables is enhanced
  2. Adapting to the changes quickly
  3. Estimates are made better in less time
  4. Project state and control is maintained constant

The Benefits of Agile

  1. The customers are satisfied as they find that the client is responding faster and delivering qualified products in a short span of time.
  2. The Vendors are happy because they reduce wastage and focus more on the high-value proposition
  3. The developer team shall remain happy as they get timely response and feedback for the work done by them and that too from the end-user.

Agile saves a lot of money and energy. Agile Software development ensures that the customers are happy and also feel that they are valued for the feedback given. It improves team morale and thereby improvement in Business value.

 

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