Agile has been expanding its presence into many segments to make business processes easier and more effective. Initially, it was permitted to software development segment only, but later it expanded its wings into various segments due to rapid changes in the customers' needs and market trends.  

The change is inevitable and doing business is not an exception for that. To cope up with the turbulent customer-driven marketplace, organizations need to be more Agile (flexible). 

Agile software development helps the organizations in dealing with the projects effectively even in turbulent situations. The importance of Agile project management has been growing rapidly.   

What is Agile?     

Agile is an iterative approach of software development methodology that uses short iterations of 1 to 4 weeks.  It enables organizations in distributing the software quickly with fewer changes. This would allow organizations in meeting the ever-changing needs of customers. Agile has the ability to create and respond to change quickly and helps in succeeding the project even the odds are against it. 

What is Agile Project Management?

Agile Project Management (APM) is defined as an iterative approach to plan and guide a project process. 

Agile software development is used to divide the project into smaller sections called iterations. In an Agile project, a single iteration refers to a single development cycle. Each iteration is reviewed by the concerned team and the inputs given by iteration reviewers will be taken into consideration to take the next step. 

Types of Agile Methodologies:

The agile methodology is nothing but a particular approach used to complete a project in software development. This method enables the teams in responding to the unpredictability of constructing software. It uses an iterative, incremental work sequence which is in the form of sprints.    

We have various types of agile methodologies which share similar elements. When it comes to implementation point of view, each one comes with a separate set of a unique mix of practices, tactics, and terminology.

Here are different types of Agile Methodologies:

  1. Agile Scrum methodology
  2. Kanban Agile methodology
  3. Crystal
  4. Feature Driven Development
  5. Lean Software Development
  6. Extreme Programming
  7. Dynamic System Development Method

1. Agile Scrum methodology: 

Scrum is defined as a lightweight Agile project management framework that can be used to handle all kinds of projects that are iterative and incremental in nature. It has become popular these days due to its ability to implement multiple practices promoted by other Agile models.

In Scrum methodology, the product managers work closely with their teams to prioritize the functionality with the help of a product backlog. A product backlog consists of information that is needed for the successful delivery of a working software system that includes, bug fixes, features, nonfunctional requirements, etc.  

2. Kanban Agile Methodology: 

Kanban is the most popular visual workflow management method among lean teams. Almost 80% of the teams practicing Lean are using kanban to visualize product creation.  Its main motive is to provide continual delivery without adding any stress to the software lifecycle. Kanban shares similar work qualities and is a process developed to guide the teams to work together effectively. 

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Kanban works based on three main principles, which are:

  • Visualize what you’ll do today (workflow automation) 
  • Decreases the amount of work in progress (WIP)
  • Enhances Flow 

3. Crystal Agile

The Crystal methodology is one of the most popular and well-known approaches in the field of software development.  It consists of a list of family Agile process models which includes Crystal Yellow, Crystal Clear, Crystal Orange, and others. Each model has unique characteristics based on different factors such as team size, project priority, and system criticality. Crystal family model helps in fulfilling the specific requirements of the projects that include certain policies, practices, and processes.

The Crystal Agile methodology mainly focuses on people and the iteration among them while they are working on an agile project. It also takes care of the business-priority and business-criticality of the system under development.  Agile Crystal mainly focuses on the people, and process rather than on the technicality.

4. Feature Driven Development Method  (FDD)

Feature Driven Development is a short- iteration process that was built based on software engineering best practices such as developing by feature, domain object modeling, and code ownership. All the above-mentioned characteristics would result in executing the feature-driven development software. 

FDD has five basic activities, which are: 

  • Designing and developing an overall model 
  • Gathering feature list 
  • Planning by feature 
  • Design by feature 
  • Building by feature

5. Lean Software development 

Lean Software development is also one of the famous agile software development methodologies that focuses on delivering value to the customer by using effective value stream mapping. The adoption rate of this Lean software methodology has been growing due to simple methodologies, guidelines, and rules.

Lean software development works based on certain principles, which are:

  • Amplifying learning 
  • Fast delivery 
  • Building integrity In
  • Eliminate waste
  • Deciding as late as possible 
  • Empowering teams 
  • Seeing the whole 

6. Extreme Programming (XP)

Extreme programming (XP) has emerged as one of the best and most controversial models of the agile methodology.  It is considered as a highly disciplined approach for developing efficient and high-quality software development, focused on continuous delivery and speed. The main motive of Extreme Programming is to develop software which will help in coping up with the ever-changing requirements of the customers.  

It supports rapid feedback loops, customer involvement,  continuous testing, continuous planning, and delivers software at regular intervals, typically for every 1-3 weeks.   

7. Dynamic System Development Method (DSDM) 

The Dynamic Systems Development Method is a common industry framework for rapid software delivery.  It has evolved as a comprehensive foundation for planning, executing, managing & scaling of agile and iterative software development projects.

DSDM follows eight key principles that guide the team and motivate it to deliver the project on time and within budget. These rules are designed based on the business needs, and often it is called a “fitness for business purposes” and stakeholder collaboration. 

Eight key principles of DSDM’s are as follows: 

  • Focus on business needs 
  • Collaborate 
  • Delivery on time 
  • Build incrementally from the bases of the business 
  • Never compromise on quality 
  • Develop iteratively 
  • Demonstrate control 
  • Clear and constant communication between teams. 

What is Scrum?

Scrum is a framework that helps in that helps the users in solving complex problems and delivering the products of the highest possible value. It acts as a simple framework for effective collaboration of teams on complex products. Jeff Sutherland and Ken Schwaber have written the Scrum guide to convey the concepts of scrum clearly. This guide consists of Scrum events, roles, artifacts and the principles that bind them together.

Agile vs Scrum

In the above paragraphs, we have discussed Agile and  Scrum methodologies. So now, it's time to know the difference between these two; let’s start comparing them.

Parameter Agile  Scrum 
Methodology It works based on Iterative and incremental approach methodology.  It is one of the famous Agile methodologies and helps in delivering incremental builds for every two to three weeks of time.
Areas of application  Agile Software development is widely suitable for the environments where team size is small but they are experts at project development. Scrum is widely used, and helpful in the areas where requirements are changing rapidly. 
Authority/hierarchy In Agile methodology, leadership plays an important role in taking decisions. In Scrum, the functionality is shared by cross-functional teams.
Flexibility  Agile is quite flexible and reacts to the changes very quickly.  Scrum is a quite rigid method compared to Agile and you have very limited scope to make changes.
collaboration In Agile one can have face to face interactions with various members and teams. In Scrum, the collaboration is done in the form of stand up meetings assigned to Scrum product owner, master, and team members.
Development process  When it comes to Agile you need a lot of development process. When it comes to scrum you need not to undergo too many changes or development process while you are implementing it. 
Delivery intervals  The agile process requires frequent delivery and needs user feedback.  In the Scrum after completion of each sprint, a build is delivered to the customer and takes the feedback.
Monitoring process  In this process, the monitoring can be done at each level during the development stage such as analysis and design are continually monitored. In Scrum methodology, the development monitoring can be done before each sprint.  
Responsibility  Project head will take care of the entire project.  In this methodology, we do not have a team head, so the entire team is responsible for taking care of the issues. 
Design process Designing an innovative process can be very simple.  Here, the designing process would be innovative and experimental.

[Related Article: Agile Project Management With Scrum]

5. Agile Principles 

The Agile manifesto is nothing but a set of Agile principles. In agile, we have 12 principles which will act as a guide for developing the software and in guiding the team members.  

Below mentioned are the 12 core principles of the Agile manifesto:  

  1. Continuous delivery of useful software to gain customer satisfaction 
  2. Dividing the big task into smaller ones that can be completed very quickly. 
  3. Recognizing and encouraging the self-organized teams with which we can get the quality output. 
  4. Organizing together motivated individuals with environment & support and believing them in accomplishing the task.   
  5. Developing a process that could last for a longer time
  6. Maintaining a constant pace for the completed work 
  7. The project should be able to welcome the changes even in the later stages of the project development. 
  8. Assembling the business owners and the project team members together on a daily basis. 
  9. Having the team to reflect on work at regular intervals, finding the loopholes and becoming effective on a constant basis.  
  10. Assessing the progress based on the completed work. 
  11. Constantly striving for excellence.
  12. Embracing change for gaining competitive advantage. 

6. Benefits of Agile Project Management

In this section, we are going to discuss various benefits that arise due to the agile project management methodology. 

  1. High Product quality
  2. Higher customer satisfaction
  3. Increased project control
  4. Reduced risks
  5. Faster ROI

1) High Product quality: 

In an Agile development process, to attain the best quality output, testing is integrated during the cycle. Integration testing would enable its team members well aware of the problems that arise during the regular course and helps them in taking the appropriate action.  

2) Higher customer satisfaction: 

Agile project management strives hard to provide higher satisfaction to the customers.  The product managers are involved in project development, so everything is been keenly observed and rectified immediately.

Agile delivers the products into the market very often so that customers can have early access than others. And, it also allows the customers to be a part of the project management. 

Frequently Asked Agile Interview Questions

3) Increased Project Control: 

  • Transparency 
  • Jira usage 
  • Spring meetings

4) Reduced risks:  

Agile uses a wide variety of techniques to eliminate the risks that lead to project failure. It always has a working product with very first Sprint, so the chances are very rare that leads to project failure.

5) Faster ROI: 

As we know agile is iterative, which means features are delivered incrementally, hence the benefits are realized early when the product is still in the development process. Long delivering cycles are always not suitable for fast-moving markets. 

Conclusion: 

Till now, we have discussed various essential aspects that are associated with Agile project management. Using agile project management,  on average, the time that takes to market your product is madec7% faster and this improves team efficiency by 16% on an average. Hope this blog has helped you in gaining knowledge on agile and various topics that are associated with it.  

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