Introduction to Agile Lifecycle
Agile Development cycle or agile lifecycle is the methodology of implementing agile project management in the process of software development. Agile Software Development Cycle is also known as the Iterative or Incremental Software development Life cycle as the software development is based on continuous learning from the iterations. Agile methodology is a method of implementing a set of planning and management techniques based on the iterative and incremental execution of tasks as per the project requirement. The agile practices concentrate on teamwork by allowing teams to work on a project and to make modifications and changes during the software development to achieve the project’s objective efficiently.
Important Success Factors for Agile Implementation
As per the agile experts, there are some important success factors for agile implementation, which includes:
- Interaction between the individual team members, cross-functional teams working on the project related to the processes and project management tools involved.
- Release of a working prototype of the product/software after the end of every iteration so that the project progress can be monitored and flaws can be detected and rectified in the next iteration.
- Agile methodology promotes the customer/client collaboration for their feedback and product improvement.
- Agile methodology invites and welcomes changes and improvements at a later stage in product development, which is extremely helpful to deliver the best in the class.
Different Stages of the Agile Lifecycle
Following are the different stages or phases involved in the agile lifecycle:
In this phase, the objective of the software and how the user interface will appear is finalized, based on the client’s requirement and interaction. It also defines the business opportunities and the time required to complete the project. Thus, this phrase clearly clarifies the client’s expectations related to the project.
2. Inception/Identifying Requirement
Once the project is finalized, initial requirements including:
- The team members (UI/UX designers and developers).
- Gathering the initial support and fund.
- Modeling the development using the architectural strategy and flow charts.
The development team now starts working on developing the software based on the first iteration to produce a working product with minimum functionality at the end of the first sprint, which then undergoes continuous revisions improvements until finalized. The following steps are executed in this phase:
- Team association with the stakeholders/clients.
- Prioritizing and implementing the iterations and functionalities.
- Scrutinizing and developing each iteration/sprint.
- The regular release of working solutions.
- Testing at the completion of every step to assure the quality.
4. Production & Testing
Before releasing the final product/software, the software is tested by the quality assurance team to detect any defects, bugs, faults, or errors and record wins and losses. This phase also supports the ongoing software release and feedback from the client and users. The client and the users are guided on how to use the software. This phase ends when the release is slated for retirement. The various tasks performed in the production and testing phase are:
- Testing and debugging of the system.
- Finishing the system development and user documentation.
- Guiding and training users.
- Deploy the system.
This phase is all about the system decommissioning or system sun setting. The old or the legacy systems are removed and replaced by the new systems/software with minimal impact on business operation and ensuring the smooth flow of the process. There are different reasons for system release in the retirement phase, including:
- The release is no longer supported.
- The system has become obsolete.
- The system needs to be updated to a newer version to enhance the business model.
Agile methodology concentrates on developing the right product with minimum cost and no error. The agile development lifecycle is all about continuously evolving and emerging the development cycle.
Sprint Planning in Agile development LifeCycle
As mentioned earlier in the agile development lifecycle, a huge chunk of work is divided into a number of small sprints or iterations, and the agile lifecycle is based on continuous learning through these iterations. A sprint may last for 10 days to two weeks. After the completion of a sprint, a working prototype of the product is delivered to the product owner or the client, and once the product owner approves, next spring as planned. A typical agile sprint roadmap consists of the following key points:
1. Sprint Planning
The first and initial stage of the agile lifecycle begins with sprint planning. A sprint planning meeting is first conducted to gather and prioritize the essential sprint components to start the project execution. The project manager plays a key role in sprint planning as the project manager assigns the task to the team members and prioritizes the activities based on the urgency of the task.
2. Sprint Development
After the sprint planning is completed and the tasks have been assigned to the teams the development team is instructed to start working on the approved guidelines for developing the product.
The testing and quality analysis team initiates the testing of the product developed before delivering the prototype to the product owner. Also, the documentation of product development is conducted before delivering it to the owner.
4. Prototype Delivery
Once the prototype is tested, then the product is handed over to the product owner and customers.
5. Review & Retrospection
The reviews and feedback are collected from the customers and the stakeholders for any improvisation or enhancements at a later stage.
Outcome of Agile Lifecycle
Some of the most popular and commonly known outcomes of the agile lifecycle are:
- Extreme Programming (XP)
- Feature Driven Development (FDD)
- Dynamic Systems Development Method (DSDM)
- Adaptive Software Development (ASD)
- Crystal, and Lean Software Development (LSD)
- Disciplined Agile Delivery (DAD)
XP and Scrum are concentrated on rapid releases and short development iterations which users review and retrospection of codes, testing, and open communication and feedback collection from the customers.
The dynamic involvement, support, and co-operation make agile development teams a much more pleasant place for most people. Instead of hefty modules, lengthy reports, and long project plans, Agile concentrates on small workshops, sprints, task-oriented discussions, and effective time management for completing the project. Team members are authorized to make the right decision in order to develop an efficient product. Thus, the agile lifecycle helps in building highly motivated, performance-oriented teams that are highly co-operative.
This has been a guide to the Agile Development Lifecycle. Here we discuss the Concept, Uses, Sprint Planning, and the Different Stages of agile. You can also go through our other Suggested Articles to learn more –