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What is Agile Development?

July 22nd, 2016

What is Agile Development?

Agility is something of a must in web development and applications. But what does an agile application look like? What exactly is agile web development?

The short and sweet of the agile movement is that it is an alternative to traditional project management, often referred to as the waterfall approach, or a step-by-step approach. An agile approach gives a team the ability to respond to unpredictable situations without having to halt everything while waiting on a big picture solution.

Most designers follow a “waterfall process” in which project assets are generated and shared, moving from one person to another in a sequential order: conception, initiation, analysis, design, construction, testing, implementation, and maintenance. This waterfall is linear, with checkpoints in place to aid project management and enable quality assurance. How

Agile software application development is:  the creative process that anticipates the need for flexibility and applies a level of pragmatism into the delivery of the finished product. Agile software development focuses on keeping code simple, testing often, and delivering functional bits of the application as soon as they’re ready. Tech Target

What is agile application development?  An agile application couples this agile development paradigm with a service-oriented architecture to develop applications which are easy to modify as business needs change. What’s more, an agile application is scalable by design.

According to the Agile Manifesto, Agile values four main things:

  1. Individuals and interactions over processes and tools
  2. Working software over comprehensive documentation
  3. Customer collaboration over contract negotiation
  4. Responding to change over following a plan

What does agile web development look like?

We love this what Six Revisions shows in comparing traditional approaches to web design to the agile approach. For starters, users of the approach understand that:

Agile web development is not a specific process, action, or a daylong exercise. Agile is a mindset, an attitude with which a project is undertaken. Six Revisions

Typical web development process circa 2000-2007.

Modern (agile) web development process.

Why use the agile approach?
Agencies need to be more flexible and prepared for mid-project changes. They need to test, test, and learn. They need to structure their teams and organizations in a way that is more reflective of how modern marketing works: quickly executed campaigns supported by ongoing tactics such as social media, blogging, lead generation, and continual optimization.  Hubspot

Why is the agile approach the norm now? A 2015 online survey of 601 software developers and IT professionals shows that the agile approach:

The primary motivators for agile adoption were improving team collaboration and increasing software quality and customer satisfaction. These factors, not efficiency gains, were seen as the strongest benefits associated with the methodology. Tech Beacon

If your organization is looking for ways to fully adopt the approach or gain the cadence and advantages that so many agile adopters enjoy today, we’d love to help.

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