Agile in the World of Technology{0}


By Daniel A.

Agile development is a methodology which is practiced in businesses, either practiced within the business or can be used more efficiently through another business. Businesses need to use the best resources in their disposal to produce services or products in which they can better fulfill the customer’s satisfaction. With so many methodologies to choose from it becomes a question on what would best suit the situation. No single methodology is the best at every situation, but there are many methodologies that can be flexible, but better suited for the issue at hand. Agile development is a great methodology if it is applied appropriately.

What does Agile development exactly help with? Agile, specifically scrum, “In a Scrum approach, software team members act together to move projects forward by using tools known as Scrum boards, Scrum meetings, and Scrum retrospectives that enable them to literally “stay on the same page” (Opt, 2015). Because scrum allows for teams to all be on the same page, it allows for greater collaboration and changing the needs of the project if they need to be made. It is easier to tweak and makes the project more adaptable in a sense. Because scrum relies on no one on the team being left behind, it allows for better communication and increases performance. Manageability is key in scrum with short and long term goals and allows for open communication allowing for better cooperation within the team.

IBM is using Agile software development and it is doing great things for this great conglomerate. Agile has done wonders for “the success of IBM’s key digital marketing initiatives” (Randall, 2014). IBM and other companies had projects that would take a great amount of time, they would be costly and sometimes these projects would be left unfinished. Without any sort of structure through the creation and design process there would be so many unnecessary financial hits. So, some companies turned to what is known as “Agile software development”. “In Agile, self-organizing teams work in short cycles called ‘sprints’ and develop the features and products in a series of projects or modules to facilitate rapid innovation” (Randall, 2014). With this process, the projects would be continuously improved through experience and the feedback from the consumer. Rob Purdie states, “The IBM Marketing and Communications Lab, we work in two-week sprints in teams of seven to ten people. By working in iterations, our teams minimize the risk of going too far down the wrong path” (Randall, 2014). Because of Agile, specifically scrum, having these sprints benefits the development and design of projects by not wasting time. This allows for new developing ideas to continuously flow and have a greater end product than the initially proposed one. After each spring, something new is learned from all the information gathered through all the sprints and allows for greater flexibility using this method.

Rally Software Development Corporation which launched “Rally Agile Team and Agile Pro” (PRNewswire, 2006). These two software editions of Rally were created in order to adopt the rise of Agile practices as more customers begin to notice the benefits of Agile development. Because Rally is following Agile, whatever is given to the consumer is quite different than what they are used to, as in, receiving the final product in one go. “All Agile teams try to deliver customer value incrementally in small batches rather than in big-bang waterfall releases” (PRNewswire, 2006). Because of this methodology, if a Rally customer would want to change something, it would be much simpler to do as they are more up to date on which step the development of their product is at. Modifications can be much easier to implement and is not hindered by the other steps of the Agile development process. Communication plays a big part between the producer and the customer, which allows for a greater product and greater satisfaction for the customer. “Rally’s family of leading on-demand software life cycle management solutions give teams the visibility and collaboration needed to formulate and scale Agile development practices that deliver high- value software in rapid iterations” (PRNewswire, 2006). These rapid Agile iterations allow for better involvement in the software development process and better implementations on the product. A lot can be learned about continuous updates of the product, such as, knowing whether there are defects, the product quality is poor, there are enough features in the product, and the risks that are being made within the project management level.

Agile development is a great methodology that is easily incorporated using Agile software and can be used by many business, big or small. Of course, it may not be the best methodology for every scenario, it does provide many pros, such as, flexibility and collaboration. Software development proves to be a great market for the use of Agile development as it continues to improve the product more and more through the design process. Ultimately, Agile/Scrum, proves to be a notable application to the world of technology.

References
Opt, S., & Sims, C. L. (2015). Scrum: Enhancing student team organization and collaboration. Communication Teacher, 29(1), 55-62. Retrieved from http://proxy.library.cpp.edu/login?url=http://search.proquest.com.proxy.library.cpp.edu/d ocview/1697501045?accountid=10357
Rally software launches new team and pro editions for agile software life cycle management. (2006, Feb 13). PR Newswire Retrieved from http://proxy.library.cpp.edu/login?url=http://search.proquest.com.proxy.library.cpp.edu/d ocview/451253214?accountid=10357
Randall, R. M. (2014). Agile at IBM: Software developers teach a new dance step to management. Strategy & Leadership, 42(2), 26-29. doi:http://dx.doi.org.proxy.library.cpp.edu/10.1108/SL-01-2014-0003