10 Myths About Agile Software Development Companies, Busted
It seems that there are some misconceptions about Agile software development that need to be addressed.
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Agile is often called a lot of things: a coding method, a process, something else. Agile really is a set of principles developed by software development leaders. It is an approach that helps a software development company in carrying out various projects and delivering them on time.
In 2001, software engineering pioneers met to discuss the problems faced by various software development companies. They built a community created the guidelines on how to develop software.
Agile Software Development Myths
Agile comes with tons of benefits and equivalent fallacies. Learn more about the top 10 myths associated with Agile software development.
10. Agile Software Development Companies Do Not Need to Plan
Agile development focuses on adaptation and inspection. Without proper planning, no firm will be able to adapt to changes in the project. The Agile plan includes sprint planning, product planning, daily standup meeting, ad-hoc meetings, retrospective meetings, product review meetings, etc.
Without upfront planning, no team can execute their daily and weekly tasks. Agile teams are bound to conduct daily, weekly, or bi-weekly meetings to get clarity about their tasks. They create solid plans to increase the chances of project success.
9. Agile Does Not Require Proper Documentation
This is another myth that people think of Agile software development. Reality is that a considerable amount of documentation is needed in the Agile process. To save that planning and to put that into execution, companies have to create various documents surrounding it.
The first document that is created in Agile is the Product Backlog. It is created to identify all the high-level requirements of the client. There are no action items mentioned in the product backlog for developers.
After creating product backlog, Scrum Masters create a sprint backlog after conducting a sprint planning meeting. The Sprint backlog shows a list of weekly tasks that Agile teams need to perform.
Once the weekly tasks are defined, the team members create a task board or burn charts showing the list of daily tasks they have to/will perform.
8. In Agile, the Development Never Stops
The myth here is that people think Agile teams never really stop developing the product. The truth is there are guidelines defined between an Agile software development company and the client as to when a piece of work is described as "done." It’s called Definition of Done, or DoD. This definition is defined at the beginning of product planning, sprint planning, and delivery.
There can be many different DoDs in a software development project. These DoDs come under the hood of three DoDs: DoD for features (user stories defined at the time of product backlog), DoD for Sprints (features that need to get developed at the end of a sprint), and DoD for a release (full features of the product).
7. Daily Standups Are for Problem-Solving
Daily Standup Meetings or popularly known as DSMs are conducted to answer three questions:
Which tasks have you finished yesterday?
What are you going to do today?
Are there any potential blockages or barriers?
A DSM ends as soon as the Scrum Master receives answers to all the questions from all the team members. A DSM lasts maximum up to 10 mins. No one is allowed to discuss and brainstorm their problems during DSM. If any problem comes up during DSM, team members can address them afterward.
6. Managers Have No Role in Agile
The myth is that a manager’s job is to assign tasks to their team members and walk away. They don’t really have an essential role in an Agile software development company.
The truth is that a manager’s job is not to assign tasks to their team members. They can do that by themselves. A manager’s role in an Agile software development company is to create an environment and culture in which the team members can thrive and do their job efficiently. A manager has to do five jobs: set goals, organize work and people, communicate and motivate team members, measure their work, and develop their abilities.
5. Everyone Knows Everything
One of the characteristics of an Agile team is that every team member in the team does not know everything. They are assigned the tasks in which he/she has the expertise.
4. Stakeholders Can Change the Requirements Whenever They Want
Stakeholders carry a misconception that an Agile software development company is quite adaptive to change. It is not entirely true. Agile software development company cannot handle the continuously evolving needs of clients. For every change, clients have to pay the price to the company.
It does not mean that a stakeholder should not introduce crucial changes. All they need to do is identify the importance of the change. If the change is worth it, then they should go for it.
3. Agile Does Not Have a Proper Structure
Agile methodologies such as Scrum and Kanban have clearly-defined structures. The picture below shows how structured and well-defined the Scrum process is.
2. Agile Is Faster
Not all the time. An Agile software development company follows Agile practices to reduce software development risk and increase their chances of success. For a project where there is a little scope of requirement change or feature enhancement, it can be recommended not to use Agile as it will save time.
But, for a project where lots of iterations are expected, using Agile methodology will save the project from getting delayed or canceled.
1. Agile Is the Ultimate Way to Carry out Software Development Projects
As a majority of software development projects do not have a clear statement of requirement and are vulnerable to change, it is recommended for a client to go with an Agile software development company rather than a traditional software development firm.
One thing that can hinder the entire Agile development process is poor communication. It can ruin the whole development cycle and significantly impact Agile project management.
Agile isn’t always the best thing in the market but it does satisfy certain conditions, namely, uncertainty in requirements, high complexity, innovative solution, and urgent delivery. If the project has these conditions to follow, which most software development projects do, then it is recommended to go with an Agile software development company.
Before start working with a software development company, one must know its potential and working style. Because even though many companies follow the Agile process, their methodologies to develop software can be different.
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