5 Principles of Agile Software Development Methods

Over the years, software development methods have also developed parallels with technological developments. Agile software development methods are one of the approaches in current software development trends. Agile methodology breaks the project down into several phases and distributes workloads across teams. We prioritize continuous improvement at every stage rather than working on changes entirely at the deployment stage. Progress is constantly updated with team members during daily scrum meetings. Examples of Agile-based development methods are scrum, Extreme Programming (XP), Feature-Based Development (FDD), Adaptive Software Development (ASD), Crystal, Dynamic Systems Development (DSD), Lean Software Development, etc. till then. It is chosen according to the type of product/service to be developed. All of these agile methods follow a set of custom principles. In this blog, we’ll focus on five core principles of agile.

1. Be open to challenges and changes

Agile methodology focuses on being highly responsive to changes at all stages of software development. Our teams need to be aware of what is going on in the project at any stage of development. The agile method breaks down tasks and deliverables into iterations to achieve this high degree of clarity. Iterations should be completed in shorter time frames, usually one to four weeks. Ensure that the timeframes align with the total time allotted to the project.

JIRA is a tool that helps us improve our code by enabling quick filter generation. JIRA gives insight into agile operations by reporting on custom workflow functions and tasks. We can build, test and release a program using this tool.

2. Embrace user input

Since agile software development methods adopt a communicative and responsive approach, the priority is for customers. Feedback from customers should be collected frequently after each iteration, and accordingly we can improve the product. Thinking from the user’s perspective rather than presuming things helps us develop better products. A new job suggested by one of your clients may turn out to be a breakthrough for your company’s products!

Zoho’s Sprints is a tool that helps with this process. The team was able to comment on software changes easily. We can also collect product feedback using this tool and work on changes in the early stages of development.

3. Facilitate direct interaction with executable programs for better visualization and feedback

We need to create practical and executable programs, rather than theoretical representations. Documentation plays a role in software development, but it is only for records. If you want to gain insights from customers and stakeholders, create small working parts of the product. We may question this aspect, and state that documentation is necessary to support our claims and provide a guarantee to customers. Well, to justify implementing the ideas I suggested in the documentation, there is no better way than to provide actionable products! When the user directly communicates with the software, his understanding and perception changes. It gives room for improvement and ensures that we are on the same page with our customers. For example, you acknowledge that you have used JavaScript to trigger a warning on the web page when users enter a weak password during registration. When this feature is shown in the prototype, it helps the customer to visualize it and supports our claims. Keep in mind that your documentation should be short and accurate. List only things you have implemented in your output, rather than future proposals.

We can use tools like AdobeXd, InVision, Webflow, Framer, etc., to create prototypes before moving on to back-coding.

4. Effective communication to intensify software development

Instilling effective communication practices among your team members may benefit your project more than embracing an advanced set of technologies. Agile software development methods keep team members engaged through principles such as daily scrum meetings and pair programming.

Daily scrum calls are used to update the status of the project by each team member. Helps us devise solutions to problems that team members may encounter. For example, if the tester does not receive deployable code from the development teams, the testing process will be delayed. It’s a higher priority task for the testing team than the development team, so plans should be made to compensate for that. Teams can connect with each other and negotiate to come up with effective solutions. Risks can be better managed if communication between the team is in order. We can help a team member who may be on the wrong track!

Pair programming is a technology in which two programmers work together on a single workstation, either remotely or in person. While one person takes on the role of driver, another can be the observer/navigator. The driver writes the code, while the observer checks each line of code as it is being written. Programmers must switch roles frequently to ensure equal workloads.

Project communication tools like Teams, Slack, and Trello can help with communication between teams or within a team. Features like channel creation, task assignment, messaging, and meeting tools enhance the collaborative experience of Agile teams.

5. Quality over quantity

While we are busy meeting deadlines, we may miss focusing on the qualitative aspects of the project during the development cycle. We can provide parts of the software that meet industry standards for safety and stability. The software can be updated and further improved. For example, if your onboard user login system is in 2 minutes, try to reduce the time by working on server latency. Remember to maintain realistic quality goals and standards so you don’t waste time in high-pressure situations to achieve something that is out of reach.

Performance testing tools like Selenium, Soap UI, and Apache JMeter help evaluate our work against test cases, to ensure that quality standards are met.

Abstract

The agile principles mentioned above are tailored to the specific methodologies we choose, the type of projects and business requirements. We can increase improvisation Agile software development methods By integrating DevOps practices.

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