Efficiencies to be gained at your organization using Agile methodologies

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In modern software development, Agile methodologies can significantly improve the performance of your engineering team. While your organization may not have a formal approach to employing Agile methodologies, you can learn the Agile Manifesto and its principles to improve the efficiency of your ongoing projects, including:

Avoiding defects: Customer-found defects often require re-work, re-testing, re-packing, and re-delivering a shippable product to the customer. While avoiding defects completely is not possible, their impact can be reduced by applying Agile principles, including:

  • early and continuous delivery of software, and;
  • deliver working software frequently.

Improving work completion: The work of your team ideally amounts to a shippable product. Partial product efforts can be avoided employing Agile standards, including:

  • prioritizing a product backlog;
  • having acceptance criteria for each piece of work;
  • frequent face-to-face communication with the product owners and customers;
  • frequent and early release of software, and;
  • encouraging feedback from end-users.

Reducing extra features: Features that are not needed by customer result in increased complexity and maintenance demands, consuming resources and adding little value. Extra features can be reduced by:

  • improving interaction between business representatives and developers, and;
  • understanding customer priorities.

Reduce internal processing: Sometimes lengthy approval and product documentation processes are wasteful. When organizations employ the Agile approach, they:

  • build teams of capable, trustworthy individuals;
  • document only that which is necessary to support the team’s iterative approach, and;
  • remain attentive to the movement of documentation between teams as the product evolves.

Cut down on task-switching: Multiple projects force staff to switch tasks, which can consume unexpected resources in focus and motion among an engineering team. Task-switching can be reduced by:

  • remaining attentive to the human aspects of a working team, and;
  • maintaining routine face-to-face communication between project stakeholders.

I welcome the opportunity to discuss Agile methodologies more fully; implementating the Agile approach, like a productive product development effort, nearly always holds room to improve! Connect with me here, on VOX, @AnandKayande.