5 Mistakes You Should Avoid in Agile Software Project

09 Dec, 2015
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Software organizations are considering faster ways to respond to needs of dynamic market and customer demand. In order to provide faster and higher quality solutions to customers, more and more software companies are leaning towards Agile methodologies. With the demand for Agile growing rapidly, software organizations are not hesitating to invest heavily on Agile. These companies are even spending a lot on training their developers.

However, it is surprising to see that when Agile has so many benefits, many software companies simply go by the methodology blindly, without properly understanding how it actually works. As a result, many Agile software projects fails. Here in this blog, we have identified the common mistakes that you should avoid, so that your Agile software project doesn’t fail.

1. Don’t start with a big framework 

It is a common mistake most software teams make. They try to start the project by developing huge frameworks that can do almost everything. The idea behind this approach is to save time when the project starts. But problem surfaces when you have to change something in the project. However, if there are 20 different segments in your app using that same framework, developers have very limited option to what they can change, because changing it might break some of them.

What is suggested

To avoid any such mistakes, work on building smaller modules to make work easier. You have to ensure that the modules are not dependent on anything. It is always advisable to keep the dependencies on light interfaces. This approach will help you to replace any one part of the system with any one of their modules.

2. Don’t build a wrong team

You have to be very clear about the kind of developer your need in your team. Proficient software developers are critical to the success of the product and the business. Their logical and analytical skills can make or break the product. So, you have to have the right skill in distinguishing a good developer from a bad developer. If a developer doesn’t match with other team members in terms of skill and attitude, ultimately the entire team and project will suffer.

What is suggested

Focus solely on finding a candidate that cares about your vision and is passionate about creating something that solves problems for people and impacts the community at large. In the interview process, the first thing you should do is gauge whether this person connects with your product vision.

3. Don’t do over engineering

Over engineering is definitely one of the reasons behind a software project’s failure. There are too many times in a product’s life when it undergoes multiple changes. This is where the problem starts and the project goes out of track. If the system is designed properly, it is not going to affect the project too much. However, if the system is designed poorly, maybe because of lack of time, pressure from top management, or any other reason, then the entire project suffers.

What is suggested

You can solve this problem by trying and selling a refactoring of the whole system. There is a high chance that it will fail and it could be harder to sell as you are just giving them what they already have for features. The better option is to roll out a small portion of the application. You have to take the whole section all the way to the database from the UI and just refactor that section.

4. Don’t go for a wrong tool

You have to select the right tool for the right project even before the project starts. What a tool is capable of and what its core strengths are will have a direct and dramatic impact on what your project can achieve. So, choosing a wrong tool can lead to disaster not only for the project, but also for the company.

What is suggested

Successful Agile software project always do course corrections and transform what they do, based on what they’ve learned during the process.

5. Don’t provide incorrect metrics

Accurate metrics are crucial for any Agile software project’s success. When software companies transition to Agile, either they don’t provide metrics or provide wrong metrics that confuse audiences. A related issue is when reports contain new or technical terminology, or entire measurement systems, without explanation to non-technical people and non-team members. When stakeholders don’t understand what is going on, they can’t act to correct problems.

What is suggested

Ensure that an appropriate communication strategy is in place for your Agile project which leverages the data each audience needs in order to understand the status of the project so the right people can take action.

Let us know in the comments on what you think? Do you see the same issues? Have you fixed them before and if so is there any advice you can give?

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Anirban Guha
Software Engineer at coMakeIT

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