Which benefits does an agile team provide?
The Agile Team applies a flexible project development methodology, whereby a project is divided into separate steps to create a practical and functional scheme of work. The requirements for each job are decided quickly, and the interaction between specialists takes place within the framework of a self-organized team.
Today, the Agile team and its methodology are more used in software development projects. It is designed to help users respond quickly to changing requirements and allows them to regularly evaluate performance.
An Agile team is dedicated exclusively to the customer and has full autonomy to make decisions about development, architecture, implementation processes, and quality controls. If necessary, it can even decide to change the configuration of the team to cover some technological aspect that was not considered at the beginning.
Agile is not just a methodology, it is a philosophy that shows a different way of working and team organization. Its goal is the development of quality products that meet the changing needs of customers.
Positive aspects about working with an agile team
The use of agile methodologies has become widespread due to the many advantages it offers. Here are some of the most important ones.
Regular management of customer expectations
The customer checks on a regular basis whether his expectations are being met, gives feedback, can make informed decisions based on objective results right from the start of the project and steers these results, iteration by iteration, towards his goal. Effort and time are saved by avoiding hypotheses.
Anticipated results (“time to market”)
The customer can start using the most important results of the project before it is completely finished.
Following Pareto’s law (20% of the effort provides 80% of the value), the customer can start earlier to recover its investment by starting to use a product that lacks only minor features, can bring a project to market earlier than its competitor or can deal with urgent or new customer requests.
Flexibility and adaptation
The customer often redirects the project according to his new priorities, the changes in the market, the completed requirements that allow him to better understand the product, and the actual speed of development.
At the end of each iteration, the customer can take advantage of the part of the product completed up to that point to carry out proofs of concept with users or consumers and make decisions based on the obtained result.
From the first iteration the team has to manage the problems that may appear in a delivered project. By making these risks apparent, it is possible to initiate their mitigation early. If you have to make a mistake or fail, better do it as early as possible. Early feedback saves effort and time on technical errors.
The amount of risk faced by the team is limited to the requirements that can be developed in one iteration.
Productivity and quality
The team regularly improves and simplifies the way it works.
The members of the agile scrum team synchronize their work on a daily basis and help each other to solve problems that may prevent them from achieving the iteration’s objective. Communication and adaptation to the different needs among them are maximized, so that unnecessary tasks are not performed and inefficiencies are avoided.
People work more focused and efficiently when there is a short-term deadline to deliver a result they are committed to. Awareness of this time constraint encourages prioritization of tasks and forces decision-making.
Iterations are regular and one month long to facilitate systematic synchronization with other teams, with the rest of the company, and with the customer.
People are more motivated when they can use their creativity to solve problems and when they can decide to organize their work.
People feel more satisfied when they can show their achievements.
The 4 values of agile methodologies
You have probably heard about the Agile Manifesto. This is the one that drove the use of agile methodologies. It was written by programming experts who proposed the 12 principles of agile software, as well as the 4 values that agile methodologies should follow.
1 – The individual and his interactions rather than the process and the tools. Customer feedback is essential. The client must feel like a member of the team and everyone must be comfortable working together, as well as with the work environment. If the group is motivated, tools and processes become secondary.
2- Develop software that works, rather than getting good documentation. Avoid creating extensive documentation that becomes useless when a problem needs to be solved. It is only necessary to document those things that are necessary to make an important decision in the development in order to understand why that decision was made. Documentation is worth more if it is direct and easily accessible.
3.- Collaboration with the client rather than negotiating a contract. Again, the customer must be part of the team so that they understand what is involved in adding new functionality to the project and only request it if it’s truly necessary. It is important that a joint solution is sought for both sides.
4.- Responding to changes rather than following a plan. The current market is characterized by changing needs, it is normal that they want changes. It is important to be open to changes so that the final product is the one expected by the client and the one needed in the market.
An agile team is undoubtedly an implementation that will make the work in the company done in the best possible way within the established time limits. All work done by these individuals will meet the client’s needs as long as there is an atmosphere of cooperation and desire to accomplish the objective.