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Agile Development: Pros and Cons

The International Association of Outsourcing Professionals (IAOP) published the results of the annual rating “The Global Outsourcing 100”. In 2011 four Belarusian IT software development companies appeared in the rating. How have they managed to do it? What is the result of such success?

One of the main reasons is using new effective technologies in the sphere of management, agile being one of them.

Recently agile software development is considered to be panacea for all woes turning any IT project into successful. Many western clients give preference to the companies working with agile.

The main peculiarities of agile

  • risk sharing – at present there are two main types of interaction with a client – fixed-priced and time-and-material contracts. In the first case all the risks on the project fall on the contractor, while in the second type the client pays for the actual work, which works little on the final result;
  • predictability – the refusal from long-term planning as well as the absence of figures on schedule and cost of the product in general;
  • regular feedback – the customer can introduce comments and alterations practically from the beginning of the project;
  • easy and quick reaction to changes in functional requirements as well as priorities;
  • selforganization – which allows escaping from the excessive management structure.

Why don’t companies want to switch to Agile?

The first reason is conventionalism: many companies think it’s not a good idea to change the familiar scheme which works and bring profit. The second reason is lack of experience in using the new system and the fear of failure in getting non-achieving immediate results. The third reason is additional resources for creating the working team and supporting its highly productive state.

Thus, in order to minimize the risk one a software development company should ope the ground for implementing Аgile on various levels: management level and development level. This process can take from 3 to 6 months but the effect in the long term is worth doing it.

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