Agile software development has become a common term in the world of IT and software development, but still, a major chunk of developers don’t know the importance of this approach. It is something that enables the developers to complete the tasks and solutions through a collaborative effort. And being a result-focused concept, it enables the developer to offer the best custom software solutions to the clients and gain their trust. Because of this, more software engineers are beginning to recognize the importance of agile principles in software development.
As per the survey in the 11th Annual State of Agile Report, there are around 98% of IT professionals in the market who stated that their firms have realized the success of agile methodology and have incorporated it across all cross-functional software development teams. To have a clear idea about agile methodology and its benefits, let’s go through this blog.
What is Agile Methodology?
Agile methodology is a result-focused, iterative, people-oriented, and time-boxed approach to software delivery that creates solutions incrementally from the beginning of the project instead of delivering the entire project at once. Basically, Agile methodology is aligned with some principles and values that are specified in the Agile Manifesto for Software Development.
Top 9 Benefits of Agile Methodology
Some of the major benefits of Agile methodology in software development are:
1. Reduces Technical Debt
Technical debt means the maintenance tasks that are required to support and help the existing product. This process includes refactoring, defect resolution, and testing. With Agile methodology, the developers can keep the technical debt to a minimum. And if changes in the features are needed, or there are any defects, or other maintenance tasks are required, they are added to the backlog of that particular product.
Agile enables the team members to review the backlog and then determine the problems that can be solved next before each sprint planning session. Because of this process, each sprint is able to offer a new opportunity to address issues with new feature development.
2. High-quality Product
When the software development team is working with Agile methods, they don’t create all the features of the software at once. But, they try to divide the important modules of the project into manageable units. This enables the software developers to completely focus on high-quality software development, collaboration, and testing.
By following this process, after each iteration, the development team conducts testing and asks the owners for review. This approach of software development enables the developing team to identify expectation mismatches at the beginning of the development process and they can also find & fix bugs in the system. Besides, by working on these incremental releases, the developers can make sure that each iteration results in a fully tested product. This also helps in improving the product’s quality.
3. Increased Adaptability
When we talk about agile methodology, adaptability or agility is one of the key benefits. When an organization grows, it becomes more complex than before. And when it becomes complex, it tends to become lethargic.
So, to remain in the competition, the companies have to focus on speed even after growing and becoming complex. But speed is something that only comes with a proper strategy. This is why the majority of the businesses are turning to Agile. With agile, businesses can create a great plan and complete the task by working in small pieces. When software developers were working with traditional software project management methods, they had to spend more time planning due to changes in market conditions and requirements. And this would take a lot more time.
But now when they work with Agile, the developers can easily make changes in the plan without any worries as they release the modules iteratively and receive feedback after each iteration. In this case, if there are any changes, they can be added to the backlog and can be worked on in the next sprint.
4. Creates Total Transparency
Agile development is something that comes with an approach that requires the involvement and collaboration of both the team members and the project owner and this is something that you won’t find in traditional methodologies. When a development team is working with an agile method, before each iteration, they have to review the modules that they created and have to agree on which user story they must include in the iteration.
Besides this, the software analysts, developers, testers, and the customer all have to work together in the agile approach to accomplish the features assigned to one sprint. The software development team also conducts daily meetings so that they can keep a track of everyone and every task.
5. User-focused Testing
Agile is a software development approach that is more than just adapting to change. The main aim of this approach is to deliver a solution that the customer wants. So, when a software developer is working on a project, he has to first understand the client’s requirements, and all these requirements are identified as “user stories.”
Besides, when the software development team adopts agile, they take the humongous tasks as “Epic”. And this is segmented into specific tasks known as user stories and it is completely based on the customer’s requirements. Therefore, it clearly means that epic comes with multiple user stories. And these user stories can be divided into various tasks and sub-tasks.
By following this process, the software development team breaks down their work. This helps them work on large projects very smoothly and efficiently. Besides, this also helps the team members to offer valuable outcomes to the customer.
6. Better Project Control
When we talk about Agile, the software development team works along with the project owners to find out what goes into each of the project iterations. This enables everyone in the team to know about the client’s requirements and what they have to deliver. This reduces the chances of any unplanned features in the sprint.
Besides, the team conducts daily standup meetings that make everyone aware of the project status and this helps the team to quickly address the development-related issues that arise in each iteration. In addition to this, planning regular meetings enables the team members to prepare for the next sprint. The developers also get a chance to learn from their previous sprint mistakes and work on new methods to improve future sprints. This proves that agile development ensures the quality of the project throughout the implementation phase.
7. Reduced Risks
The traditional approach of software development comes with some uncertainty but this is not the case with Agile software development. When the developers work with the traditional method, they can only test the software at the very end. And at that time they make sure that the end result meets the client’s requirements.
But when it comes to using the agile method for mobile or web app development, this risk is reduced. When the developers create a product by developing sprints, they can find out whether they are on track or not. Besides this, product testing is something that can be done after every iteration. This enables the developers to get feedback on the project after each iteration.
8. Predictable Delivery
When a software development team is working with keeping Agile methodology into consideration, using the fixed schedule and time-boxed sprints can be really helpful for the team members to deliver a service or create a new feature at a higher frequency. This can be done with a strong level of predictability. Besides, it enables beta testing of the software before its scheduled time.
9. Improves Time to Market
The agile method is something that enables the developers to reduce the go-to-market time. It enables the software developers to capitalize on the opportunity successfully. So, when they get a chance, they can enjoy the first-mover advantage.
Agile is one of the best software development methodologies available in the market. It enables the developers and the customers to have an open conversation about the project and make it better. But sometimes, when the software development team doesn’t have experienced developers, Agile methodologies will not give expected results. Therefore, businesses must hire an agile software development team that has experience and expertise to work on both small & large-scale projects. The developers must be able to take full advantage of all the features, techniques, and perks of the agile method and offer the best software solution within the budget and before the deadline.