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Agile Software Development Ecosystem

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What is an Agile ecosystem ?

Agile ecosystem is an extended methodology concept that has 3 characteristics: barely sufficient structure, collaborative values, and chaordic perspective. Since the name will not give any clue to you on what they really are..we will look at each of these characteristics in detail.

It is the wider coverage than normal methodology that make it an ecosystem.Methodology does not touch much on the human factor of the development such as the organization structure which is covered in “barely sufficient”, and collaboration and teamwork.

Barely sufficient methodology.

This characteristic is a reflection of the chaordic characteristic – in this case it refers to the organization structure, which is very streamline (just enough, barely sufficient) in order to be flexible to react to changes.In an Agile environment the control is more on how to make the different individuals to work together as a team, instead of making every one the same (through rigorous process documents) so that it will be automatically (or assumed) become a team.

In programmer language – the old method of team is an ARRAY – something that hold similar type of element, while Agile team on the other hand is a RECORD – where each element in the RECORD is different, and each one serves its own function the best, but still overall they work together to construct the RECORD.

Collaborative values.

In the old development method, the processes are defined on stone – every one must follow the same process irregardless of individual talent and skills. Agile on the other hand promote customization of the process in order to tap the best out of individual developer.

Agile also promote face to face teamwork interaction. In the old system, team communicate through documentation – that is why the documents have to be very detail and big, hence very hard to maintain in volatile environment.

Chaordic perspective.

The word chaordic is actually a combination of chaos and order.

Early part of an Agile projects are based on rigorous exploration of concepts and technologies. Even during the whole development cycle the concept of exploration is actually still going. In this type of development environment the normal standard concept such as CMMI wont stand a chance.

You can see from the previous characteristics (barely sufficient, and collaborative) how the chotic part is included into Agile characteristic.

The question is how do you manage such an environement and organization?

The answer is to employs adaptive management style- macromanagement (instead of micromanagement). The leaders have to leave large room for innovation and creativity in order to address keep changing environment. In the mean while still have the eye on the final goal and what is the current state of the project.

The organization can react very fast base on the current state of the project compare to the final goal.

Conclusion

There you have it – simple description on the three characteristics of an Agile ecosystem.

As you see Agile ecosystem requires more to the project leader and the management team compare to the old just follow the book type of software development. So if you are selling the Agile idea, the first group that have to buy it is the management people.

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Source by Sa Wahid

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