Agility in system development defines the approach whereby the strategies applied in a project are conceptualized in a manner so flexible and elastic that they are entirely adjustable to the present conditions. In contrast, classical process models  define a specific succession of activities with all restrictions and predetermined artifacts in a detailed way.

Basics

Agile system development taps into the vast repository of “Best Practices” that has been stored inside the heads of project participants for a long time. Its focus is on what is workable and, therefore, it is being reapplied voluntarily in the following projects. Agile approaches increase individual freedom and nurture trust, rather than enforcing control. Agility is action, not reaction. It requires knowledge and demands the highest qualification and professionalism from each participant. Only the one who knows how the cogs interlock has the courage and competence to override imperfect rules. “Aptness, not perfection” is one of the central paradigms of agility. The focus lies on what is essential, which makes all approaches more flexible for possible adjustments to the present conditions.

Agile Process Models

The foundation for different agile strategies is the agile manifesto, on which basis several different iterative-incremental approaches have been developed. In the beginning, agile models led a niche existence and were regarded as rather exotic. By now, however, they have been established as fully valid approaches in the field of system development. The following list is a selection of well-established agile approaches:

Scrum is based on the principles of transparency, inspection and adaption, which rely on certain roles (product owner, scrum master and development team) and rituals (sprint-planning, daily scrum, sprint review and sprint retrospective). At the center of a scrum-based development process lies the sprint, which is a clearly demarcated time frame, in which a deliverable product is developed.

Extreme Programming focuses strongly on the actual development, i.e. coding, of a product. The basis for Extreme Programming are the values simplicity, communication, feedback, courage and respect. The process model uses main-practices, such as Pair-Programming, test-driven development and the collective ownership of code, which offers the developer concrete guidelines for implementation.

Kanban is not an immediate part of agile process models. It can, however, fairly easily be implemented in an agile way. Kanban consists of six principles, such as the visualization of workflow, which is outlined by columns assigned to every process step on a Kanban-board. With a pull-system in use, the requirements pass through each column of the board and therefore through each step of development.The Definition of Done defines the prerequisites for the implementation of a requirement.

 

Agile Scaled Frameworks allow for agile process models, which are usually applied within one development team only, to be combined with approaches of lean management, in order to use the advantages of agility in larger development projects.

Other agile process models, which have, however, become less significant in the last years, include The Crystal Family, Feature Driven Development (FDD) and Evo.

Agility and RE

The basic principles of Requirements Engineering  are relevant in an agile setting as well, which equally requires a well-structured use of requirements. In contrast to classic process models, the steps of Requirements Engineering are not worked through “en bloc” and only once, but are re-employed with every new iteration cycle. 

Documentation may be less significant in agile process models than in classic ones. Nevertheless, the stakeholders’ knowledge (be it the client’s or the user’s) must be communicated to the developers – which means Requirements Engineering must still be performed.

Introduction of Agility

The introduction of an agile process is a project, in which the basic principles of Change Management meet the additional challenge of established hierarchies and values. At the start of a project, the goals of the introduction of agility must be defined and the parameters of the project established.

  • Which agile approach is the most fitting and most beneficial for the company?
  • To which degree shall the agile values replace the historically-established ones?
  • How can a company-specific agile manifesto be composed?
  • In which phases of the development process should agile approaches be used?

Using agile approaches is not uniformly suitable for every company, every project and every development phase. One solution for these cases is a hybrid approach, combining agile development with classic Requirements Engineering. A hybrid approach couples the advantages of agile approaches, such as high transparency thanks to regular inspections and considerable ability to adapt thanks to short development cycles, with the structuredness and controllability of classic process models.

If one decides to introduce agility into the entire development process, a multi-step transition is a good alternative to a radical change. Traditional roles and responsibilities are compared to each other and newly distributed.

Do you have any questions?

If you have any questions to the consulting and project work of SOPHIST, we are at your disposal: from the organization and preparation to implementation and follow-up. We will be happy to help you.

Your contact person:

vertrieb[at]sophist[dot]de

+49 (0)9 11 40 900 63

Your contact person:

vertrieb[at]sophist[dot]de

+49 (0)9 11 40 900 78

Your contact person:

vertrieb[at]sophist[dot]de

+49 (0)9 11 40 900 62

FROM OUR SOPHIST BLOG

(we feel sorry, but our BLOG posts are in German)

Agile Skalierungsframeworks – Teil 1: Was sind Scaled Agile Frameworks?

Zwischen der Entstehung des Agilen Manifests 2001 und heute, hat das Thema Agilität nichts an Aktualität eingebüßt, ja sogar noch zugenommen. Nach wie vor wird an dem Problem der Umsetzung dieses Manifests  gearbeitet, im Besonderen, wie ein agiles Konzept in …

SOPHIST und das agile Anforderungsmanagement auf der Modern RE 2019

Was passiert, wenn agiles Anforderungsmanagement das Leitthema einer Konferenz ist? Richtig! SOPHISTen reichen Vorträge ein, packen ihren Messestand und fahren natürlich hin. Und so waren wir auch dieses Jahr wieder mit spannenden Vorträgen und als Goldsponsor auf der Modern RE …

Methodisch vom Lastenheft zum Pflichtenheft – Teil 3: Wie viel RE benötigen Auftragnehmer?

Im dritten Teil unserer Blogserie „Wie viel RE benötigen Auftragnehmer?“ geben wir Ihnen einen kleinen Praxisleitfaden für die Analyse von Anforderungen. Im Kontext der Blogserie möchten wir Ihnen zeigen, wie dieser Ansatz Sie dabei unterstützen kann, Ihre Ressourcen möglichst gewinnbringend …

Yummy, I got love in my tummy

Jeden ersten Montag anlässlich des Non-Profit-Tages gibt es frischen, selbstgemachten Salat bei SOPHIST. Dieser Tag wurde gewählt, weil dann alle SOPHISTen im Haus sind und jeder die Chance hat, an dem gesunden Mittagessen teilzunehmen. Die Idee entstand aus unserem zweiten …

SOPHIST REgelwerk2020 – Teil 3

Das SOPHIST REgelwerk – Die neue Regel „Begriffe konsistent verwenden“ In unserem ersten Blogbeitrag über das überarbeitete REgelwerk haben wir Ihnen versprochen, erste Informationen zum neuen REgelwerk zu geben. Genauer gesagt, beleuchten wir die drei neue Regeln und die sogenannten …

Copyright 2018

SOPHIST GmbH

Do you need more information?

Just give us a Call  and let us direct you to the right contact person?

Tel:      +49 (0)9 11 40 90 00

E-Mail: heureka[at]sophist[dot]de

Our office hours:                   Monday to Thursday:                              Friday:
                                              08:00 - 12:00 Uhr                                    08:00 - 12:00 Uhr
                                              13:00 - 18:00 Uhr                                    13:00 - 17:00 Uhr



Of course you are also welcome to reach various departments directly by e-mail:

All about Trainings:

training[at]sophist[dot]de

 



All about projects or consulting activities:

vertrieb[at]sophist[dot]de

 



All about our job offers and your career opportunities at SOPHIST:

DeineZukunft[at]sophist[dot]de


 

All about our events, marketing activities and publications:

marketing[at]sophist[dot]de


 

 

Legal disclaimer

Privacy Policy