Benefits of Agile

Benefits of Agile

Agile project management provides numerous benefits to organizations, project teams, and products. The benefits extend well beyond the technology teams – they allow the business to be agile and respond to customer requirements better.

Happy customers

The product owner is always deeply involved in the process – requirements definition, change requests, and the entire engineering process. The development process, which was historically opaque, is now transparent. This allows the engineers and the customers to learn from each other. The engineers learn what the REAL requirement is, and the customers get a flavor of the challenges faced by the engineers. The speed of change and focus on building working software typically results in happier and more knowledgeable customers. 

Quality metrics

Understand requirements, develop a working model, test & validate. This model has daily/weekly/monthly checkpoints to ensure that the right solution is being built. More importantly, since a small module is built and tested each time, it can be rigorously tested for technical and functional issues each time. Incorporating continuous integration and daily testing into the development process allows the development team to address issues while they’re still fresh. 

Tools, better communications & project control

Regular meetings ensure good communication. There are a variety of tools for running agile projects – the project management process, tools to manage the scrum boards, creation of workflows, tracking progress with Burndown charts, track team velocity, development platforms, etc. 

Having mature tools to track progress and automate tasks has a significant impact on the overall health of the project. Also, for the project leaders there is a significant flow of data from all sources helping them manage the project in an open transparent manner. 

Faster and better results

Agile is always iterative and allows the product owner to see results rapidly. This allows for rapid changes of direction if needed, thereby minimizing significant losses. Statistics show a 30-40 faster process for most comparable Agile projects. Being able to keep the end customer in the middle of the process almost always results in optimal results 

Risk Management

It is unlikely that an agile project will crash and burn. In most scenarios, it is highly likely that there will be changes, which may alter the schedule and budget. However, those small changes help in preventing the huge losses where a complete SDLC project had to be shelved as the user requirements changed during the 12-18 months in which it was being developed. 

Agile typically blends user stories with business-focused acceptance criteria to define the feature and results. This tight combination offers the opportunity to beta test every component to ensure that the right value is being offered. 

TraQiQ’s Digital transformation team has worked on multiple significant efforts to move companies to the Agile methodology and welcomes the opportunity to tackle tougher challenges.

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Defining scope in Agile

Defining scope in Agile

Traditional software development methods tend to be inflexible and fail to respond to aggressive customer change requests. In contrast, agile software methodologies provide a set of practices that allow for rapid recognition and implementation of change. The Agile methodology focuses on iterative and incremental methods of management. It helps teams in an evolving landscape and maintains a focus on the rapid delivery of business value.

Agile scope management is significantly different from traditional scope management. Historically, a large part of SDLC style project management is managing and tightening of scope. Significant effort goes into defining all the features and functionality upfront. There is significant angst associated with changing any of these items during the project. 

Agile approaches to scope management are fundamentally different than traditional methods for scope management. Agile processes focus on simplicity and building out smaller chunks of features and functionality. The development cycle could be 2 weeks to 2 months (shorter is better) with a goal of shipping working code that showcases a specific set of features. 

Change management is an inherent part of agile processes. Revised scope and new requirements are included in every sprint. The product owner determines the value and priority of new requirements and adds those requirements to the product backlog. 

As with most projects, resources and schedules are planned initially. However, new features with high priority don’t necessarily cause budget or schedule slips. They simply push out the lowest-priority features. This is where it is critical to actively manage the backlog (the complete book of work). 

This iterative planning development allows for changes with each new sprint. By allowing the more important features to get built first, the customers key requirements get built first and the lower value features get postponed or cut (survival of the fittest). 

Typically, the scrum team determines the scope of the project. It also determines the scope and goals of each sprint. This is based on the overarching product vision. This is followed by the development team creating the most important features first. 

At any point in an agile project, anyone in the organization with a good idea or suggestion can identify new product requirements or changes to existing ones. Subsequently, the product owner determines the value and priority of all requirements and prioritizes them in the product backlog. 

TraQiQ’s Digital transformation team has worked on multiple significant efforts to move companies to the Agile methodology and welcomes the opportunity to tackle tougher challenges.

Why Agile ? Outcomes, Goals & Customers

Why Agile ? Outcomes, Goals & Customers

Most companies are trying to stay competitive, increase market share, and stay in sync with their customers.

Mobile devices, digital everything, data-driven decisions, and other such factors are clearly driving forces in the digital age. Change is constant. How does one run a company or a department or a product group in a manner that maximizes market share, profitability, and customer satisfaction? By being “Agile”, of course. 

Facebook clearly saw innovative features in Snapchat. They tried to buy the company in 2017. When they failed, they started to copy/emulate some of the key features. This rapid movement reduced growth for Snap, and clearly helped Facebook keep their top properties in the spotlight in social media. 

This is a great example of business agility. Customers wanted a key set of features. A large company like Facebook was able to respond rapidly and recognize this need. The engineering, marketing and other teams moved rapidly, and rolled out these features in record time, before there was any significant business impact. 

With so much activity and competition out there, engineering teams must meet customer needs faster. Moving to outcome-based software planning and delivering helps teams do just that. But it’s more than that. Agile helps organizations in multiple industries improve product quality, time to market, and employee satisfaction. 

In addition to Outcome-based planning, it is essential to include change management in the software development process. In most scenarios, the process of building the software, testing it and reviewing it with customers will produce significant change. This iterative process is likely to meet the customer’s requirements better, through early and continuous delivery of valuable software. 

Being able to deliver working software modules rapidly allows for the user community to get comfortable with it, and test the features, functionality, and business impact. Being able to capture changes in the user requirements at every stage ensures the software is going to meet the user’s requirements. 

TraQiQ’s Digital transformation team has worked on multiple significant efforts to move companies to the Agile methodology and welcomes the opportunity to tackle tougher challenges.