I believe technology can be exploited to greater levels than we have allowed. We are constrained by 20th century business models and ideas. Collectively, we need to move past technology for the sake of technology and truly focus on moving markets beyond the status quo!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The Agile Dilemma



Who doesn’t want to be agile? Ballet dancers, weight lifters, and business executives alike aspire to be agile – that liveliness, coordination, and quickness is something we all desire in life and business. Why then is there an “Agile Dilemma” in software development?

voke defines the “Agile Dilemma” as the inherent risk and confusion created by the business desire for speed and flexibility misinterpreted as a mandate to participate in the developer-centric movement called Agile, which may not be appropriate to all organizations or projects.

What this really means is that business executives are expressing the need to be flexible, nimble, and responsive to customers to ensure satisfaction and a competitive edge. The software development team is listening to this business mandate and interpreting it as a call to participate in the Agile movement. But, is participation in the Agile movement right for every organization or every project?

We wanted to find out how software teams were interpreting and using Agile, so we conducted a survey. The survey ran from July 2011 to January 2012. We had over 200 individual participants from around the globe and companies of all types and sizes take the survey and give us their opinions on Agile as it relates to software development.

Once the survey was completed and the data analyzed we wrote a report that details all of the findings and provides analysis. Just to give you a couple of examples of what we found:

• Participants shared over 100 unique definitions of what Agile is

• 57% report confusion about Agile

These stats give you some insight as to why there is an “Agile Dilemma”.

The full report is available to voke’s premium research subscribers or available for on-demand purchase.

Do You Know What Your Cost of Rework Is?
While we were surveying people about Agile, it became clear that the cost of rework of their software was largely a mystery. Rework is something everybody has, everybody budgets for, but are reluctant to admit it – at least publicly.

Since rework is something everybody must deal with, we thought it would be valuable to create models associated with rework in Agile and non-Agile environments. voke analysts used scenarios described in the Agile survey to develop three scenarios focused on the cost of rework in an Agile environment. As a baseline, we used the standard “Cost of Quality” model for rework in a non-Agile environment.

These rework models have been requested by software engineering teams of all types for quite some time. Now, you can see how rework numbers compare for Agile and non-Agile projects.

The full report is available to voke’s premium research subscribers or available for on-demand purchase.

Help your teams with the "Agile Dilemma" and understand the cost of rework – the answers may surprise you!

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