Agile in a Nutshell: Iterative Magic Wand of Software Development
Agile methodology represents an efficient way of building applications, as it shows visible progression of software development in real time by supplying working material in short periods, called iterations. Iterative approach to building software is sufficiently advantageous over some other long-term scope strategies, as it creates trustworthy environment open for close communication.
Agile is a cost-effective software development strategy, as it reduces the expenses on publishing due to a very clear understanding of resourceful scopes, and is prompt and flexible in introducing business model changes on the go.
Therefore, shorter cycles are easier to plan, control and keep within a schedule, introducing well-thought preventive measures in a timely manner if needed. In such a way, the whole system is focused on the optimization of a ready product that has been supplied earlier, making the software more and more consistent with the current needs of the final user.
Magic Behind the Scenes
The key aspect of Agile software development is communication.
The clear understanding of goals and technical tasks in each of the teams is what lies at the foundation of a successful project. The Project management team plays an important role in the elucidation of the Client’s expectations to the technical team and casting light on some challenges imposed by web development on the way of achieving the perfect result. Weekly 3-5minute meetings with the Product Owner cover the progress of the previous week and allow to make sure it is going smoothly and all the risks are under control, followed by a 30minute discussion of the to-do plan for the week set by priorities.
Keeping JIRA-bbit in a Hat
At this stage, it is imperative to track stories, separate them into smaller tasks in a project management system like Jira or similar.
Separating larger units into smaller tasks ensures all of the requirements are kept and activities are recorded for further analysis and reporting. Often time estimation and actual time spent on a specific task may differ for a variety of reasons, such as basic human factor. That is why the importance of tracking and reporting activities is not overrated. It serves as an important indicator to always keep in mind while the application of Agile software development methodology that saves time for extra meetings and discussions during the production period.
What You See is What You Get
As a common rule, “you can’t always get what you want”: something always gets on the way.
Therefore, while optimizing the functionalities, it is important to show the immediate progress of the work done on the staging server, so that it would be easy to correct the faults and bugs quickly enough before they ever get to the Production server. Such workflow creates a seemingly synchronized process of simultaneous implementation and QA activities. In the meantime, the Client is notified of the changes on the Staging server and can review and play with the preliminary changes check by the software specialist. However, the final word of approval comes on the behalf of the satisfied Client, who creates new requirements and priorities for the next cycle.
What is in the Magic Box?
Agile is fractal: self-repeating structure building process growing over more and more precise details. This gives a company an opportunity to publish the app early enough with essential basic functional elements that represent the general idea and vision of specific business model and grow on new requirements following more iterations already in the process. What it gives to software development is more control over the quality, consistency and better-tested functionalities. As the iterations are short periods of time, the code that has been developed is clear enough to be reviewed and is easily adaptable to new changes.
After all, such a software development strategy isn’t called Agile for anything: bringing clear communication, well-organized structure, cost reduction, and efficacy.