Many organizations believe Agile is the silver bullet solution or the end-all be-all approach to software development. Agile can be successful under the right circumstances and application of the methodology, but in the end, it cannot produce more work than what is constrained by time, budget, and quality. At Twentyseven Global, we have modified the standard Agile development methodology to produce better results. Two important factors are: the right level of documentation and the right level of management oversight & business owner involvement.
The belief that the adoption of Agile means there will be no documentation is a common misconception. While Agile places a higher importance on working code over mass amounts of documentation, this does not mean documentation should be completely eliminated and developers are free to code at will. The goal should be to deliver the right amount of documentation for a given project. Time and money should not be spent writing documents that provide no value to the customer or project team and focus on what is truly needed to make the project a success. Wireframes, Click Action Response tables and Use Cases for complex logic are examples of documentation that helps ensure software quality. Project Schedules, Resource Plans, and Status Reports provide value to both the internal project team and project stakeholders. System Configuration Guides, and End User Guides, are examples of client documentation deliverables that provide value for knowledge transfer.
Another common pitfall organizations should avoid is the belief that Agile only applies to the software developers. When adopting Agile, an organization must accept and adapt to change during a project. In order for this to be successful, frequent feedback from the business team is a necessity. One of the primary reasons companies want to move away from the waterfall approach is that the business team is unable to see the end results until late in the project. This can lead to extensive rework if delivery does not meet expectations. At Twentyseven Global, we have tailored our agile process to include user acceptance testing after each sprint throughout the project. In addition, for larger projects we have included a testing sprint at the end of each release for regression testing.
Through years of experience with software development projects we have modified our agile process to create a lean, efficient software delivery approach with proven results. We understand how to avoid common pitfalls using Agile to produce better software solutions for our customers. We apply the right amount of process and documentation and understand the level of management oversight and business involvement that is needed to make our projects a success.
To learn more about our Modified Agile approach to delivering custom software solutions, contact Steve Roatch at 913.484.2647