The field of software project management is constantly evolving, with new methodologies and approaches being developed to help organizations better manage their projects.
One methodology that has gained significant traction in recent years is Agile. Agile methodology is a set of principles and practices for managing software development projects in a flexible and adaptive way.
As a professional and student of computer science with insatiable interest in the connection between business and technology, of particular interest to me is the confluence between agile methods and its use in the development of software project management.
The Agile Manifesto, which was first published in 2001, outlines four key values for Agile software development: individuals and interactions over processes and tools, working software over comprehensive documentation, customer collaboration over contract negotiation, and responding to change over following a plan.
These values have been embraced by a wide range of organizations and have led to the development of various Agile methodologies. As more and more software projects adopt Agile practices, there is a discernible uptick in both successful and unsuccessful patterns.
There are three main approaches of Agile Methodologies, each with its own unique set of details that facilitate faster team adaptation to change, these are Extreme Programming (XP), SCRUM, and Dynamic System Development Method (DSDM).
One of the key advantages of Agile methodologies is their ability to adapt to change and uncertainty. Extreme Programming (XP), SCRUM, and Dynamic System Development Method (DSDM) are well-suited for dealing with the high levels of change and uncertainty present in software development.
Today’s software development environment is characterized by high levels of change and uncertainty, and traditional project management methodologies are often ill-suited to dealing with these challenges.
Agile methodologies, on the other hand, are designed to be flexible and adaptive, allowing teams to respond quickly to changes in requirements and priorities.
However, while Agile methodologies can be highly effective, they are not without their challenges.
In the article “The Impact of Agile Methods on Software Project Management” by Michael Coram and Shawn Bohner of the Department of Computer Science at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, the authors explore some of the key issues that organizations may face when implementing Agile methodologies.
One of the main challenges that organizations face when implementing Agile is balancing the six key features of Agile: collaboration, code reviews, small teams, short-release timelines, time-boxing, and constant testing.
These features are all critical to the success of Agile projects, but they can also be difficult to balance, particularly for project managers who may be more accustomed to traditional project management methodologies.
Another challenge that organizations face when implementing Agile is team cohesion. Agile methodologies depend heavily on collaboration and communication, and if team members are not working well together, it can be difficult to achieve the desired outcomes. This is particularly true for teams that are distributed or have high levels of turnover.
Agile methodologies place less emphasis on preparation and planning, which can be both an advantage and a disadvantage. On the one hand, Agile methodologies can be more efficient and effective than traditional methodologies, as they allow teams to respond quickly to changes and adapt to new requirements.
On the other hand, Agile methodologies can also be less predictable and can lead to delays or missteps if teams are not properly prepared.
Agile methodologies may not be suitable for all projects. Business concerns, project time, and worker turnover can all hinder the effectiveness of Agile methodologies, and organizations should carefully consider the suitability of Agile for their project before implementing it.
Agile methodologies can be highly effective for managing software development projects. Agile approaches are particularly well-suited to dealing with volatile requirements and they can lead to improved project performance.
However, Agile methodologies are not a one-size-fits-all solution and organizations should carefully consider the suitability of Agile for their project before implementing it.
In my experience in utilizing agile methodologies, I would opine that the principles underlying Agile methods do impact the practices, people, processes, and projects vis-a-vis the various forms of Agile methodology employed by the organization.
There is still room for improvement in the areas of human interaction and organizational structure through the creation and debate of agile methodologies.
Adetoyese Adepoju is an Information Technology Management Specialist with proven work experience across tech, banking, digital payments, compliance, and risk management.
He is a graduate student at the Cardiff Metropolitan University and is currently leading the IT Digital Transformation Team in International Digital Financial Services (IDFS – https://international-dfs.co.uk/ ) Ltd with a charge to re-engineer operational resilience and deliver memorable experiences across several customer channels and touch-points.