What is agile development and how it can improve your business?

What is agile development and how it can improve your business?

Organizations are living in an increasingly competitive business environment in which software development is mostly driven by the needs of the customers as well as the ones presented by the business. It is a fact that, nowadays, offering lower prices is no longer a winning strategy, so organizations must choose new ways to compete in the market.

One of them may well be the better use of data; as specialists are saying, “information is the new oil” and, in fact, the data, when gathered and well analyzed, may be used to meet customer demands and deliver superior customer experiences.

And, by operating in this shifting competitive landscape, so many businesses have now embraced agile methodologies. In fact, Agile software development is no more than an approach to software development, according to which requirements and solutions are delivered through the collaborative effort of self-organizing and cross-functional teams and their customer needs to be prioritized by a product owner.

In Agile development, organizations must assume phases like adaptive planning, evolutionary development, early delivery and continual improvement and, at the same time, be able to give some rapid and flexible responses to change.

By the way, the term Agile was popularized, in this context, by the Manifesto for Agile Software Development in which the values and principles there espoused were derived from and underpin a broad range of software development frameworks, including Scrum and Kanban.

It is a fact that Agile frameworks are an important tool to enable teams to cut down work into smaller pieces and letting them release updates in a matter of weeks or even days. And, if you remember well, before Agile (by using traditional approaches), that was supposed to take months….no competitiveness would last.

That is one more reason to assure that Agile development practices have gradually risen to become trusted and, more than that, one of the preferred methods of development for software teams all over the world. By using Agile, organizations are even more prepared to respond to the demands of the digital age. And they are huge…

Agile is the answer!

Are you are looking for solutions to increase the competitiveness of your business? If so, Agile development is the right way to go! In fact, we are talking here about a huge business opportunity no organization should miss and it is time for you to grab your own.

According to PwC internal benchmarks, Agile software development offers big benefits across multiple areas:

> Quality: Bug rates decrease

> Time-to-market: An improvement of 18 to 20%

> Productivity: An improvement of 14 to 95% (according to PwC, this wide range reflects different types of software being built)

> Cost: A reduction between 7 and 29%

> Employee Satisfaction: An improvement of 20 to 40%

Those are facts, presented when we are looking through customer perspective but, when we are talking about numbers, it is also important to know that, according to Atlassian, the worldwide market for Agile application lifecycle management tools “more than doubled in revenue between 2014 and 2017.”

Armed with the support to innovate — and the time to do so ― developers felt they have conquered more power, leading them to create inspired solutions to answer business problems and, more important, reducing costs. Underline this, there is an important stack of technology, fuelling it all. For example, when a developer is creating an app using a low-code platform, Agile lets them test out new designs and new features very quickly.

According to McKinsey researches “many traditional companies are experimenting with agile practices in discrete pilot projects and realizing modest benefits from them”. Despite, fewer than 20 percent consider themselves “mature adopters”, but McKinsey says “the companies that are deploying Agile at scale have accelerated their innovation by up to 80 percent”.

From bottom to top

But make no mistakes about it: to ensure Agile’s widespread success, companies need to incorporate agile thinking into everyday business processes. And this means having a sneak peek of Agile in management’s budgeting and portfolio planning cycle. The same is also true when we are talking about some other administrative functions, such as finance and human resources.

It is also important to secure the most senior management support you can get. Even though middle management support is key, there is no doubt that transformation on a grand scale often requires support from the most senior managers of an organization. According to Gartner, “C-level support played a big role in Agile success at their company”.

And don’t forget…

Agile is, nowadays, a crucial tool for surviving in the digital economy. It’s a fact that document-driven processes have often inundated software development, as well as so many other industries. Working Agile is a way to stop that. We are talking about iterative processes; about the capability that with each iteration, additional features and value can be added as needed and fixes can be made.

This means organizations only build what they absolutely need to, avoiding budget losses and saving time.

Agile workflow automation is another added value, as the workforce is able to better adapt to whatever the enterprise wants from them. Workflows built in the cloud allow users to extend and connect forms, applications, content, and systems of record with decision-makers in the business.

It also reduces risks, as communications and interactivity can be more effective, and grants corporations a faster ROI (less time to development, better time-to-market, happier customers, ROI going up).

All in one, the benefits of Agile software development are real, especially for companies looking to accelerate time to market and assure their presence into the digital economy. Agile offers benefits in several areas, and all you have to do is choose the right partner.

If you have any question regarding Agile development, feel free to contact us.