The Agile methodology is unique in a few ways:
Before Agile, a development style called “Waterfall” was the norm. Effectively, with Waterfall methodology, clients would brief in a large project, developers would make detailed notes and then go away for a couple of months and build it. The client would basically not see anything until the project was handed over. Sometimes, this worked out well, but often this would result in disappointment.
In 2005, this all changed when a bunch of frustrated nerds lead by a guy by the name of Alistair Cockburn documented a new way of project management which became known as Agile Development Methodology.
I personally LOVE the agile development process? Why? There are 5 main reasons:
Lets face it, we are people and people like wins, high fives and pats on the back.
One of the problems (I mean psychologically) with software development, is 99% of the process consists entirely of a poor bunch of developers starting at a screen 9-5 writing thousands of lines of code over and over again. Not the most exciting thing in the world for both developers and as well as their clients who sit patiently and wait to see progress.
With Agile methodology, the development process is broken into small chunks of work called “sprints”, giving small milestones the whole way through. Clients and the development team catch up at end of each sprint to review progress, share what has been accomplished and discuss the next bit of work. It’s a nice feeling at the end of the week to see something live that can be played with.
If the project is a big one, it is near impossible to idenify all the potential issues at the beginning as these emerge during the process of development.
Agile methodology allows regular review of issues and questions with the client before they become big problems. Clients can discuss problems or oversights as they appears with the ability to pivot quickly as needed.
Let’s face it, even the best scoping process is still chinese whispers. Usually a client has a vision in their head that is near impossible to 100% express and document fully for anyone else to understand.
Agile is awesome because the client is involved through the process, reviewing sprints and providing feedback to development team as they go. This enables the project is be adjusted to ensure the end result matches the client's vision.
Developing a piece of software is one thing, but making sure it is stable and bug free is a completely different challenge.
One of the big benefits of agile development is that testing is much easier. Rather than needing to leave the testing right until to the end of the project, Algile Development allows ‘mini testings’ cycles throughout the project as each sprint is completed. This process ensures that bugs are more likely to be found and fixed during the development cycle.
Nothing in life is certain, especially not in software development. In my experience, most successful software applications have both a clear vision but also the ability to pivot as required.
Agile development allows for this flexibility, with clients and developers able to easily pivot at each milestone in the development process. Clients and the development team can review the work done and then set future priorities based on new learnings.
So there you have it, my deep nerdy love for Agile development.
In my view, if a development project is bigger than, say 3 months, Agile development is by far the best approach to ensuring the vision becomes a reality, on time and to budget.
I am not very tech savvy myself but didn't need to worry as BLD team led me through the scoping process, workshopping my vision for the app and helping me to get the concept ready to develop. I found them to be incredibly patient and understanding throughout the process and loved how they would offer ideas to ensure a top outcome. I am so pleased with the end result.
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I had a idea startup idea, but no idea what to do next. The Big Leap Digital team were simply awesome, not just in building my my app and software, but also guiding me step-by-step in creating a true Saas business. If you have a tech idea don't go anywhere else, Simon and the team are simply the best in the game.
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The Agency has chosen to work with Big Leap Digital on a range of tech projects over the last 4 years with a focus on internal software solutions to help streamline our business. I have found the Big Leap Digital team outstanding partners and would highly them to anyone who is looking at custom development project.
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