How Agile Frameworks Can Maximize Your Product Development Success

The traditional way we used to approach product development in numerous industries, the so-called Waterfall methodology, is not really the best fit when it comes to software development. 

It implies creating the entire architecture of a given project upfront, with strictly defined requirements and information for the entire scope of the project beginning to end, as well as sequential phases of development that must follow each other in line.

This approach may be effective when it comes to manufacturing automobiles, for example, where components are run along an assembly line and each part is added in a predefined sequence, giving us a car as the finished product at the end of the entire production process.

But software development requires a more flexible approach, a methodology that uses resources more efficiently, which is able to adapt quickly to ever-changing market conditions and rapidly evolving technologies.

“Intelligence is the ability to adapt to change.”

– Stephen Hawking

What is Agile Project Management?

As opposed to a Waterfall environment with a rigid structure that is not adaptable to new information and changing conditions, an Agile framework employs a more flexible approach that involves constant assessment of a project throughout the entire product development cycle.

The key feature of Agile is that development is iterative and incremental, with work being done in so-called sprints. This enables the integration of feedback and updating of requirements after every iteration, and if necessary, adjusting course during any phase of development.

Agile methodology is based around a set of values and principles that are meant to maximize the efficiency and productivity of software development, while increasing flexibility and adaptiveness to shifting market demands during the entire product development cycle.

The key features of Agile include:

  • Valuing individuals and their interactions within self-organizing teams over strict processes and tools. 
  • Prioritizing the launch of working software that gives immediate value to users, then delivering frequent updates and new features along a shortened timeline. 
  • Employing customer collaboration to gather feedback from users on the usefulness of the delivered features, and then incorporating it to keep improving the initial MVP in each iteration of development.
  • Focusing on responding to change, as opposed to following a strict, predetermined plan that is set in stone.
  • Performing constant reflection on previous work at regular intervals, in order to determine how to be more effective and adjust behavior and workflow accordingly.
  • Giving everyone involved a common foundation for independent decision-making, so that each team can find the most efficient way to handle each new task at hand.
  • Involving close collaboration between the development teams, product owners and other stakeholders on a daily basis, with face-to-face interaction, consistent exchange of information and updating of requirements.

What Benefits Does an Agile Approach Provide for Your Company?

We have been living in a rapidly changing world when it comes to technology for quite some time now, so utilizing an Agile framework in your software development has some clear-cut advantages in relation to traditional project management.

Adaptiveness to Changing Market Demands and Competitive Pressures

The last thing you want to do is have a massive product launch after years of development, only to realize that your software’s features and functionality are no longer relevant due to drastic market changes, new circumstances and shifted customer demands.

Agile’s iterative nature allows you to assess the development of your product at every stage of the process, keep track of your competition, market changes and new technologies, as well as gather user feedback in regular intervals.

This means that you can update your backlog after each iteration, reprioritize planned features, and make better-informed decisions regarding the work that should be done in the next sprint.

Shorter Timelines and Faster Time to Market

Instead of one big product launch after many months or even years of development, Agile breaks up the work and development timeline into smaller chunks, where new code can be released every 2 to 4 weeks, as soon as it passes acceptance testing.

This allows you to deliver functioning software that provides value to your users much sooner, while also shortening the feedback loop. 

Your development team is able to see much quicker what works and what doesn’t, and is able to incorporate any necessary changes into the next iteration of a particular feature.

Predictable Costs and Schedule of Development

Since each sprint has a fixed duration and a defined deliverable, it is easier to predict the amount of work that will be done by each development team. Therefore, it is easier to understand the approximate costs of development of every feature, as well as the time frames in which they can be delivered.

This also makes it easier to prioritize the development of each feature, enabling you to deliver those features that provide your customers with the most business value in the shortest amount of time. 

Increased Productivity

One of the key benefits of frequent meetings among teams is that everyone is kept on the same page as far as overall priorities go. Clear lines of communication ensure that everyone’s priorities are aligned, and that group efforts are coordinated and moving the project as smoothly as possible toward a shared vision.

Clearly defined roles and responsibilities ensure that everyone on the team knows what they should be doing, meaning that time, efforts and resources are focused exactly where they are needed.

Reduced Risk

In today’s fast-paced world, the chances of your project’s requirements never changing from start to finish of your development process are slim to none. 

Some key requirements and information are more likely to come up in the middle of your development cycle, not to mention the occurrence of unpredictable scenarios that you simply couldn’t have known in the initial planning phase.

The ability to adapt and pivot in any phase of development greatly reduces the risk of wasting time and resources on delivering an outdated product that has no market fit.

Maximized Customer and User Satisfaction

Involving your users and stakeholders in the development process helps ensure that you have a good grip on precisely what they need and want from your digital product.

Agile allows you to validate users’ needs as you move through the development cycle, by conducting testing and gathering feedback after each new iteration. This means that you can identify and fix any shortcomings of your previous work, as well as make sure that your product’s features remain aligned with your customers’ expectations.

Iterations can be repeated as many times as necessary until you have reached a final product that satisfies your users’ needs in the best possible way.

We Leverage the Power of Agile Teams to Deliver Maximum Business Value to Our Clients

At Telecorp, we believe that an Agile methodology applied by great people is the most effective way to secure project success.

Our development team has extensive experience in delivering tailored software solutions and custom applications that help our clients achieve their business goals, by using the latest technology, architectures and advanced tools available on the market.

Do you have a software project or an idea for a product you are passionate about bringing to the market? Contact us today to learn more about how we can help!