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Agile software development is an umbrella term for a set of practices and methods involved in a software development. It focuses on the collective work of self-organized teams, which eventually lead to the evolution of new necessities and solutions.

12 Principles of Agile Software Development​

There are twelve basic principles of agile software development:

  • Customer satisfaction

  • Adaptation to include the changing requirements

  • Regular delivery of working software

  • Close cooperation between business people and clients

  • Involvement of trustworthy motivated individuals

  • Face to face conversation

  • Set up of working software set as the principal measure

  • Sustainable development to maintain the standard working pace

  • Technical excellence

  • Simplicity is essential

  • Self-organized teams for bringing out the best architecture and solutions

  • Self-analysis to check the chances of betterment

Properties of agile software

Iterative, incremental and evolutionary: The product development work is done in several stages. The product is first broken into small increments. Iterations are short timeframes which involves a cross-functional team working in different developmental departments. After the iteration period, the final product is demonstrated to the stakeholders. It ensures functionality and timely release of the product.

Efficient and face to face communication: Every team will have a customer representative, who acts on behalf of the stakeholder and answers questions of the developers during iteration. Information radiators will also be displayed near the development team which shows the day to day product development status.

Short feedback loop and adaptation cycle: The team has daily stand up session where they brief about what they did last day, what they are yet to do and on the roadblocks if they have any, to reach their goal.

Quality focus: They take up many techniques and methods to ensure stringent product quality. 

Adoption methods

The distinguishing factor between agile method and traditional software development method is the situation-appropriateness. When the former is flexible and adaptive, the latter is rigid and prescriptive. This implies that the working practices can be altered according to the product. Frameworks like scrum, work on the principle that not a single process can fit into every developmental programme and so it should be tailored accordingly to meet up to the product necessity.

Problems in agile software development

Lack of product design: Agile software development does not focus on documentation. With time, it will be required to do re works in order to scale up the system.

Lack of sponsor support:  Lack of enough sponsor sport can lead the team to face resistance from management and business partners, which could thus eventually lead to failure in their product.

Insufficient training: Lack of training and fixed rules, put agile software development at a risk of failure.

Excess preparation: Too much preparation can be a waste of time. This mostly happens with teams who are new to agile software development.

Assigning tasks: Assigning tasks puts people into a particular role, and reduces the chances of cross training.

Attempting to take too much in the iteration: Having too many works in progress can lead to content switching and queuing.

Allowing technical debt to build up: It hinders planning ability due to the increased amount of unscheduled work.

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