Agile methodology: understanding its values & advantages | ONE BCG

Agile is an iterative approach to software development and project management that supports teams to deliver value to their customers faster and with less hassle. An agile team delivers work in small but consumable additions. There is a continuous evaluation of plans, requirements, and outcomes to have a natural & flexible mechanism for quickly responding to change.

Core values of the agile manifesto

  • Individuals and interactions over processes and tools - The first value underlines teamwork and cooperation. In the past, teams would concentrate on having the best possible tools or methods for development. But Agile Manifesto suggests that while tools are crucial, the people working behind the processes are even more significant.

  • Working software over extensive documentation - Documentation has its place for consumers and coworkers and can be a great resource. However, software development's primary goal is to create software that provides market advantages rather than comprehensive documentation.

  • Customer collaboration over contract negotiation - Agile principles require customers to be involved in all stages of the project. Teams must work together and be in regular engagement with their clients. If the customers are kept in the loop throughout the development process, team members can ensure that they meet all the client's requirements.

  • Responding to change over following a plan - Agile manifesto believes that changes always improve a project. Changes are a reality in Software development, which the Software process should reflect. A project plan must be flexible enough to change according to what the situation demands.

Why choose agile?

The agile method predicts change and allows for much more flexibility & adaptability than traditional methods. Clients can even make small changes in goals without making considerable alterations to the budget or schedule. 

Agile advantages

  • Improved quality: One of the most significant benefits of an Agile methodology is improved product quality. By adopting Agile software development practices, organizations can provide timely solutions and customer satisfaction.

  • Focus on business value: The increased emphasis on delivering strategic business value by including business stakeholders in the development process is another of Agile's key advantages. The team knows what's crucial and can provide their organization with the most market value features.

  • Predictable costs and schedule: With Agile, the organizations can clearly understand the estimated cost for each feature, combined with the estimates given before each Sprint. It also enhances decision-making and the need for additional iterations throughout the process.

  • Allows for change: Although the teams have to remain focused on delivering an agreed-to subset of the product's features throughout each iteration, the Agile manifesto enables them to continuously optimize and refine the overall product backlog. 

  • Transparency: Another advantage of agile software's implementation is that it offers a unique opportunity to include clients in the project journey & provide transparency. Involving them helps in prioritizing functionality, iteration preparation, testing sessions, etc.

  • Promotes RPA at scale: Finally, implementing an Agile approach to RPA programs is a crucial advantage because it encourages scale automation. Agile concepts such as dedicated teams, sprint preparation, backlog maintenance, etc., provide compliance and control for automation teams to regulate end-to-end processes on a scale at a pace.

Agile methodologies

  • Extreme programming: It is a platform that allows teams to build high-quality software & helps to enhance their course quality. It enables software development among acceptable engineering practices. Extreme programming is applicable when working with small, extended development teams and dealing with new software risks.

  • Kanban: It is a technique used to plan, monitor, and enhance the system flow. Kanban makes it possible for companies to imagine their workflow and restrict the amount of work in progress. Kanban is applicable where work arrives unpredictably without waiting for other work items, and it needs to be delivered immediately.

  • Lean: It is a collection of tools and concepts based on the detection and elimination of waste to speed up the process. It results in maximized value & reduced waste.

  • Scrum: Scrum is a process where teams construct a hypothesis, test it, focus on the experience, and make modifications. Depending on the requirements, it helps teams to combine activities from other systems. Scrum is used by cross-functional teams working on product creation, and the work is distributed into more than one iteration. 

  • Crystal: Rather than on technologies and processes, crystal focuses on individuals and their experiences. Crystal operates on the premise that projects are unique and complex, seeking to streamline processes and maximize optimization. It is used to improve collaboration among teams, continuous integration, configurable processes, and users' active participation.

Conclusion: Agile is a robust framework, providing benefits to the development team & at the same level to the client, helping in achieving unified business objectives efficiently. Agile helps project teams deal with many of the most common project deadfalls in more controlled practice.

An Agile strategy works best in situations with a relatively high degree of ambiguity, where creativity and innovation are more critical than predictability to find the right answer.

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