Agile software development – it’s more than just sprinting and scrumming (Part 2)

Agile thumb

Watch the content of this blog on YouTube

Welcome to part two in our series of blogs about whether organisations are REALLY following the agile methodology when they claim to be.  In the our first blog (read here first, if you’ve not already) we looked at two of the scenarios in which agile techniques are misapplied.  Remember, you can watch all this in our YouTube video available here.

In this post, we look at another two.  Next time, we’ll look at three more, but for now…

Misconception 3: Scrums and sprints define Agile

1Agile 2.2

A familiar diagram

One of the most well-known features of an Agile project is the daily scrum meeting.

We have encountered several organisations which claim to be ‘doing Agile’ solely on the basis of having implemented the scrum meeting technique into their process.  But of course Agile is about much more than this.  Scrum meetings can take different forms but in the most common we ask three key questions:

  • What have you done since yesterday?
  • What are you planning on doing today?
  • What  –  if anything – is stopping you from achieving that?

The purpose of these questions is of course to make sure that everyone knows what everyone else is doing and to ensure that blocking issues are dealt with.  This is essential for an agile application development project with a fixed timescale.  The scrum meeting is very useful, but it’s important to recognise that it is just one part of the Agile process.

Misconception 4: you can use it as an excuse

Often, Agile can be seen as an excuse NOT do a whole host of necessary processes – for example:

  • not writing a proper specification
  • not writing documentation
  • not using the appropriate tools
  • and not sticking to plans
Agile 2.2

Agile is not to be used as an excuse for not doing things properly. Watch the video for more.

It can be viewed as a bit of a free for all – but at Jumar, we believe that all the above are necessary. Just because the Agile methodology allows you to change the scope during a project doesn’t mean that you don’t need to know what you’re building when you start or that you don’t need close, formal control.

When you start an Agile project, we believe that you should have a clearly defined scope, a specification and a detailed plan.  The difference with Agile is that you EXPECT change during the project and the approach accommodates for it.

Next time: user demonstrations, testing and priorities

We’ll be publishing our next YouTube video very soon covering these very topics.  Watch out for the blog version too, coming over the coming weeks.

Like to know more?

Please contact us here.

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