Why on earth should websites or web/cloud applications be developed using an Agile approach? To understand the answer it’s necessary to look at the normal development approach.
Over the past few years we’ve noticed the approach is remarkably similar between producing a website and a more complex web/cloud hosted application. Both have aims and objectives that can be written down in advance, and both have specific details that become more apparent as the project develops. This is the key reason why projects become increasingly problematic. It’s not until you get further into the project that the real detail becomes clear and the value of the specific requirements becomes clear. At this point often there is no budget left for such extra work.
A lot of extra time is then spent trying to work out ways of adding all the extra requirements into the project, with the lowest budget possible. The big emphasis will be on the big launch and go live day when everything has to be completely, 100% finished, never to be touched again.
The pressures this approach causes will reduce production quality of content, code and design.
Flexibility – an Agile methodology will ensure that manageable changes can be made throughout the project. It’s expected that change will be required as project stakeholders get closer to the detail.
Quality – partly through better approach, but also through having a less stressful approach, with better time management and a steadier workflow, each person involved in the project can deliver their contribution in small chunks instead of big large ones which typically have more problems.
Speed to Deliver – if you are building the first version, with the knowledge that you can introduce more requirements into the next version a few months later, then you don’t have to cram everything in. This means you can release more quickly, learn from seeing a working version, and through having greater understanding create new ideas for the next version. The whole process speeds up as a result.
Cost – large projects exponentially grow in budget because of the contingency rule. If you estimate a 10hr task you will be 10% accurate. If you estimate a 100hr task you’ll be around 25% accurate. A 500hr task is likely to have a variance over 50%. Small project chunks ensure more focus and less wastage.
These benefits are ones we’ve consistently seen through a number of projects. There are many others as well. Talk to us to find out more.
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