Nowadays, technology has become a deep-rooted part of human life. Both for a single user and a company, it is near impossible to get things done smoothly without using technological means.
Software solutions enable you to accomplish things in a jiffy, and that explains why businesses rely on diverse types of applications. However, software development methods keep changing with time. Nowadays, most software development companies choose an agile methodology.
The Basics of Agile Methodology
Agile methodology can be defined as a people-oriented, iterative, time-boxed, and result-oriented approach to developing software solutions. It is about making software incrementally from the beginning of a project rather than delivering a final product.
It is done according to the methodologies described in the much-touted Agile Manifesto for Software Development. As per this methodology, the requirements, plans, and results get assessed continually, and teams respond to changes in the project without delay.
The Agile methods started gaining traction in the software development industry in the early 1990s, and the older waterfall approach lost its appeal soon after. If you look around, most custom software development solutions have embraced the agile method. The Agile software development Manifesto stands on these pillars or principles:
- Individual and team interactions in focus on processes and tools.
- Working software over overall documentation.
- Customer collaboration more important than contract negotiation.
- Responding to changes rather than following a plan.
Over the years, the agile software development methodology itself has evolved. You can find a software design agency using Scrum agile framework, but another agency may prefer the Kanban or Lean method. Some firms, in fact, blend practices from several agile frameworks.
Why Software Development Firms Prefer Agile methodology over Traditional Methods
A majority of offshore and regional software development agencies prefer Agile methodology, and this is definitely not without credible reasons. Read on to find out the key reasons behind the universal popularity of Agile software development practices.
Easier to Implement Customer Feedback
There is no denying software solutions are made for end-users or customers. Unless a software development agency is able to take note of customer preferences and deploys those in its upcoming products, it will get outshined by segment rivals soon.
Deploying customer feedback in software development can be hard when a firm sticks to the older waterfall method. The older methods are not flexible enough to implement the changes midway.
In the agile software development method, there is enough room to implement changes. In the agile method, an application is created in separate stages or sprints. The agile method is focused on feedback implementation.
Easier to Manage Projects
When a software development agency chooses the agile methodology, it finds reduced hiccups in managing the project and developing the application as per plan. In this method, the team discusses and analyses plans and changes in the project at the commencement of each sprint.
These repeated meetings help the team manage the entire project better, and newly inducted changes do not throw things out of gear.
Team Building is Better
The Agile method is based on solid teamwork. In this method, every member of a team works together. There can be senior and junior programmers and developers involved in such a project. Even then, each team member is aware of his/her responsibilities at each stage.
The communication is robust between the team members, so nobody is in the dark about the changes and development at any point in time.
Better Utilization of Tools
A regional or offshore software company may use a wide range of tools or frameworks to create new applications using the agile methodology.
Agile tools help in simplifying complex tasks. The team members fathom how to manage and execute the project. The tasks are assigned as per the expertise of the team members. This helps in managing and completing the project in time, without facing any hurdles.
Delays in software development projects can be tedious to cope with. The clients may get frustrated when they do not get delivery of applications in time. Delay in software development also leads to cost overrun.
When the agile methodology is used, the risks of delay in project completion are minimized. The continuous evaluation and flexibility to deploy changes in development ensure teams do not have to wait unnecessarily at any stage. If bugs and security issues crop up, they are identified soon and eliminated.
Teams Stay Motivated
When the agile software development method is used, the team members stay motivated, as has been observed. They interact more and remain updated on each aspect of development. Nothing is kept under wraps. So, they feel motivated and overall productivity gets a boost.
Better Quality Software Solutions
When the agile methodology is used, the quality of the application is better. This is owing to the fact that in this process, many rounds of analysis and evaluation take place. Unlike the traditional method when development is done in a linear, dimensional manner.
In the agile method, there are scopes for revision and changes. This ensures coding flaws are discovered, and security loopholes can be identified. So, when the final solution is delivered, it does not contain bugs or glitches.
Are There any Drawbacks?
There exists a few limitations of agile software development.
- The documentation is somewhat limited in this method. This can make things hard for a team member who has joined late.
- Agile methodology focuses on making software in parts and phases. This may lead to fragmented output in some cases. Incremental delivery ensures products are launched without delay but getting one cohesive unit is tedious.
- As the methodology focuses on meeting short-term goals, the risk of losing focus on the long-term goals is there.
Picking the Right Software Development Company for Agile Development
Nowadays, a lot of software development firms embrace the agile methodology. However, it is necessary to assess the contenders before you zero in on anyone for your business application development needs.
Here are the things you need to assess:
- At first, you are to check the tenure and expertise of the company using agile application development. You should ask it about what type of agile methodology it uses and why. Sometimes, such agencies may use more than one agile method.
- You have to check out the clients an agile software development firm has worked for. It is better if the company has clients hailing from the same segment as your brand. Checking out the feedback of its clients is something you just cannot afford to skip.
- Finally, keep some time for checking out the applications created by an agile application development agency. Check out the ease of use, security features, resource usage, and UI of the application created by the agency.
Agile software development does come with a number of benefits. However, you have to find a suitable agency for developing applications using agile methodology.