Agile development: where is it heading?

Most of us are now using a myriad of different software every day.

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Since the turn of the century, Agile has developed into a mainstream methodology, replacing waterfall as the most commonly used methodology in software development. Microsoft, IBM, and SAP are now using Agile for a number of their products.

Agile gains

Agile projects are 28 per cent more successful than traditional projects. Agile has a lot to offer outside of software development projects. Indeed, there may come a time when an entire organisation is run in line with Agile principles.

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Fundamental problems of software development

There are three fundamental problems when it comes to software development. They can be categorised as doing the right things, doing things right, and doing things quickly.

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1. Doing the right things: This essentially means not developing new software or iterations/updates just for the sake of it and only using your resources to create something that is needed and useful. The world is full of software that does not really do much, often replicating existing software or providing a new-look interface that doesn’t actually achieve anything apart from looking different. A key part of Agile is going to be ensuring that the right software is developed and that first releases deliver what users and customers are demanding.

2. Do things right: Doing the right thing but in the wrong way is no good and means that the initial aim is not being met. In this scenario, the software may be there and may well work most of the time, but it will most likely be plagued by system crashes and bugs. Using Agile methodology will help to ensure constant testing and feedback, thereby significantly improving the quality of the software being produced.

3. Do things quickly: Software development needs to be done quickly to meet customer needs and expectations. To keep ahead of the competition, software teams should be capable of releasing new products in a matter of weeks.

The future of Agile development is focused on being able to develop software “right and fast”.