If you have read anything in the last few years having to do with software development, you have surely heard the term agile methodology tossed around here and there, as it has become the new standard for software development projects. So much so that it is almost synonymous with software development as a practice. If you have not, rest assured, you will shortly. The main aim of this post, however, is to uncover the many nuances behind its popularity, as more than 80% of software development companies now rely upon it for the success of all their projects. For those of you still yet unfamiliar, agile software development refers to a set of development methodologies which focus on an iterative and collaborative approach to formulating software solutions. The movement has become increasingly popular over the last 10 years given how successfully the approach works to refine and deliver a project over time. It involves a dynamic mix of continuous testing, planning, and integration to evolve a software solution in a way that is highly flexible. It is exactly this adaptability which makes it so effective, and thus exceedingly popular. In fact, even public sectors, which are often considered highly conservative and old school when it comes to their processes, are adopting agile given its vast benefits. We will go over some of these main benefits below.
For starters, that agile method is less time consuming, and therefore results in faster development overall, given such active collaboration and communication among team members. In addition, its flexibility allows software developers to continuously improve a project per all requirements. In this way, it also acts as a relative safety net, ensuring no stone is left unturned as a project progresses. It also assists in risk management as developers can identify issues and respond early on. It’s highly cost effective as short milestones and deliveries allow for a fixed cost approach, while its transparency in frequent deliveries leads to greater customer satisfaction. Lastly, and most importantly, quality is ensured by integrating testing throughout the life cycle of a project. It is for these reasons agile methodology has become, and will likely stay, the development standard for software development companies far into the future.