Expectations of the customers are increasing day by day in every walk of life. When it comes to experiencing a technology, new imagination and vision spring up in many minds and software developers and organizations are striving to meet them.
Software development also involves a complete life cycle. The life cycle defines different phases which are followed to complete a software product with all the specified stipulations and within committed time frame. SDLC (Software Development Life Cycle) involves some methods or model which helps ensure the design and development is on the right path. Agile model or agile software development method is one among them and widely adopted for its flexibility.
Agile is an incremental type model where software development involves incremental and rapid cycles. Its each phase comprises of iterations where each iteration typically lasts from about one to three weeks. It supports services which are tailored to best suit the project requirements. In order to accomplish such aim, a team works simultaneously on various areas like planning, analysis of requirements, design, coding, unit testing, and acceptance testing. As it focuses upon process adaptability and rapid delivery of working software product, agile model currently become to be the rage in SDLC for all types and size of projects.
Advantages of Agile model:
- Rapid, continuous delivery of useful software that drives customer satisfaction
- Small work regarding software development which is possible to deliver frequently
- Continuous interaction and daily cooperation between business people and developers
- Focus upon technical excellence and good design
- Regular updates and adapting according to changing circumstances
- Late changes in requirements are also welcomed and easily implemented
Disadvantages of Agile model:
- Lack of emphasis on necessary designing and documentation
- It takes lots of time when it comes to software deliverables as it is difficult to assess the effort required at the beginning of the software development life cycle.
- The project can easily go off track when customer representative is not sure about the final outcome they want.
- In the development process, only senior programmers are able to make any decision. It doesn’t provide a place for newbie programmers, unless they are supported by the experienced resources.
When to use Agile model:
1. Agile model supports frequent changes. When new changes are required, it is easy to implement if it developed via agile model. Agile offers freedom to change within very little cost because of the frequency of new increments that are produced.
2. It is possible to implement a new feature in the product to lose work of only a few days, or even only hours, to roll back and implement it.
3. Limited planning is needed in the agile model to get started with the project. Changes can be discussed in the middle or even at the end of the development and new features can be added or removed based on feedback in this development cycle. It helps the developers bring out exactly that what a customer wants.
4. Freedom of time and options are available to system developers and stakeholders when they go through agile. More time allows them to include more options and lets them the ability to leave important decisions until more or better data or even entire hosting programs are available; meaning the project can continue to move forward without fear of reaching a sudden standstill.
After analyzing the pros and cons of agile model, it is possible to conclude its usefulness in SDLC. Still water-fall and other models have been practiced in the organizations. What would you have to share upon this subject?