In the past few years, much has been said about Agile methodology and its relationship to software development. In fact, Agile software development is now one of the key differentiators between companies that are moving forward into the future and those that are content to stay in the past.

Unfortunately, unless you have the proper tools at your disposal, it can be difficult to know if you are using Agile software development the way it was designed. In this article, we are going to walk you through how to get where you need to go using Agile software development.

Once you have this knowledge under your belt, limitless possibilities will spread out before you when it comes to software development and new technology. Let’s take a look.

agile software

Define your project’s parameters

The first key to ensuring the success of the Agile development process is defining your project’s parameters early on. Before a single line of code can be written, you should know what is on the project backlog, who will be covering what responsibilities, and how often you are going to reassess these needs.

Once you have these down and have laid out a plan for your project, the next step is to set up best practices for remaining within these parameters. After all, you don’t want to set them up for no reason. Instead, work with your team to discover what kind of environment works best for them. Ideally, this will be a place where open communication and creativity are valued.

Read also: Every Agile Development Process, Explained

Understand the ‘when’ of Agile software development

After you have laid out the parameters of your project and aligned your team with them, the next step is to understand when things happen with Agile software development. Now, there are many different frameworks like Scrum and Kanban that can guide you in your development, but the main thing here is to set the proper expectations.

In traditional software development projects, reports are filed as the work is done and higher-ups decide what needs to be done and when. However, in an Agile software development framework like Scrum, the entire team has meetings every day that allow for everyone to get on the same page.  

If you aren’t prepared for this kind of open communication and teamwork, Agile software development might not be right for you, as this is one of the hallmarks. On the other hand, if this kind of flexibility excites you, you have come to the right place.

Get comfortable with being uncomfortable

One of the hardest things for first time Agile developers is the concept that your end-product is almost a complete unknown until the end of the process. The reason for this is that unless you get comfortable with being uncomfortable, your project will not go the way you want it to, leading to this result. Unless everyone is on the same page, the project will suffer.

“Agile innovation depends on having a cadre of eager participants.” Harvard Business Review.

Whether you are working with a development company or your own in-house developers, commitment to the Agile software methodology is vital to the overall success of your project. Without top-down and bottom-up support, you won’t get the results, just like you thought. However, this is a self-fulfilling prophecy, as you never gave it the chance. This leads us to our next best practice or tip: trust the process.

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Trust in the process

A vital aspect of Agile software development is that everyone provides their skills to the team in order to create the best end-product possible for the customer. As we mentioned, unless everyone gets on the same page, this isn’t possible. However, if you can trust in the process and do your part while the rest of the team does theirs, you won’t be disappointed.

Think of it this way: let’s say you go to the mechanic and ask him to help fix your car. Now, you might think going in that there is something wrong with your engine, but the mechanic comes back and says that you need a new battery. Are you going to trust your own flawed judgement and ask him to fix the engine or trust in the process and get the fix that your car actually needs?

When you don’t trust in the Agile software development process, you are choosing to drive around in a car that you refuse to fix. Should it surprise anyone when your car, or project, breaks down halfway through? Trust in the process and say yes to letting go.

Help your team to succeed

Now that you have decided to jump into the process, the next step is to get the most out of the development. Developing software solutions can be difficult and your team will need you to help them succeed and create the best possible end-product. This can be something as simple as giving them more time to work on an assignment or as complex as organizing the team for maximized efficiency.

Despite the route you choose to follow, it should be a goal of your Agile software development to help your team whenever possible. While each member of the team has their own strengths that should be celebrated, they also have weaknesses that can be balanced out. Discover these together and find a solution that works for everyone moving forward.

Talk with the Snyxius team about your development goals!

agile software team

Arrive at your destination

The final piece of Agile software development success comes when the project is complete and you arrive at your destination. Way to go! As we have mentioned before, this is probably not the destination you envisioned when you started and that is OK. The time has now come to bring your product to the end-users that you created it for.

It can be easy at this point to get complacent, but you should always strive to keep improving and making your product better. Simple things like performing maintenance or updating the software will ensure a longer life for your product.

And that about does it. We hope that these tips and tricks on Agile software development will aid you in the future, one that is not only brighter, but more efficient as well.