Agile methodology consists of practices and principles designed to increase efficiency for software developers and teams. It is based on 12 principles that include a focus on good design, face-to-face communication, daily collaboration, simplicity, sustainable pace of development, customer satisfaction, and team reflection and modifications.
This systemic approach to software development is based on iterative development, where requirements and solutions are created through collaboration between cross-functional teams.
While this process was systemized in 2001, its core values have been present for years. Software development methods began in the 1950s and a variety of lightweight and heavyweight methods were created in the 1990s. In 2001, the Manifesto for Agile Software Development was published after 17 software developers met in Utah to discuss the topic. This collaboration and resulting publication made agile methodology popular and an accepted standard.
While visuals may have slight differences, all representations of this method show a cycle like the one below:
The cycle begins with brainstorming ideas to determine and analyze any requirements. From there, it goes into the design phase, followed by development, feedback, resolving any issues, implementing tech support, and eventually delivering the software to the client. If errors or issues arise, the cycle begins again to address changes that need to be made.
The method has been so well-received because it provides a process for software development and encourages some key best practices. By its nature, when software development teams employ these principles, there are benefits that are hard to ignore.
In order to train a team in becoming “agile,” there are several frameworks to choose from. Scrum and Kanban are two of the most popular frameworks.
Scrum is a project management tool that is ideal for teams of 10 or less. Project goals are organized in “sprints” and during a sprint, each morning begins with a 15-minute daily “Scrum” during which members of the team discuss their progress and make adjustments as needed. The Scrum process follows the agile methodology and organizes the project cycle for the team.
Alternatively, Kanban utilizes a board where team members can see the progress of all phases of a project at a time. It aims to be lean and eliminate any inefficiencies during the project. To optimize Kanban, team members must be able to communicate constantly in real-time and also be completely transparent about their work and progress.
Both training methods provide professional development, continuing education, and certifications through their parent company.
Training and certifications show employers that you are experienced with the principles of this method and are willing to communicate and assess projects within a team.
Understanding this method will help you optimize efficiency in development projects.
This method encourages acceptance of change as well as using change to adapt and redirect development plans as needed.
Working with others isn’t always easy. Learning these techniques will provide you with ways to collaborate with other members of a development team and work in unison toward project goals.
The method encourages teams to have a visible layout of project timelines, tasks, and more.
One of the best ways to learn this methodology is through bootcamps.
Bootcamps range from 8 to 36 weeks and can be specific to this skill, or included in curriculums for software developers. A list of bootcamps geared towards these techniques are listed below so that you can compare and find the right one for you.