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Evaluating Agile Development Models

Evaluating Agile Development Models

Effective management of projects in organizations is still a critical challenge, thanks to software projects’ high costs and failure rate. The challenge has seen the development of agile methodologies, which take an iterative approach to software development. Agile approaches utilize various models and are useful for all project types and beyond. Several success factors are associated with agile models, including customers, training, and team. The advantage of the agile software development approach is that it divides tasks into small increments that help keep up with the demands of the modern workplace. Furthermore, the different methodologies in models are based on quality, transparency, flexibility, and continuous improvement. Organizations are implementing agile methods to manage projects as they make managers’ jobs easier by allowing them to have greater control over projects. In this regard, this report evaluates various agile development models, including SCRUM, Dynamic Systems Development Model (DSDM), and Adaptive Software Development (ASD), by looking at their planning and execution methods and potential obstacles to using each of the models.

Planning and Execution of Agile Projects Using Agile Models: SCRUM, DSDM, ASD

SCRUM

Planning a costing system project using SCRUM takes a responsive software development framework by creating a Product Backlog. Essentially, the SCRUM planning process sets out stakeholders’ expectations by defining the costing system’s funders, beneficiaries of the project, and those who would otherwise be affected by the project. According to Jiménez et al. (2020), such a plan helps stakeholders organize tasks to take advantage of the project’s functionalities during the implementation process. Other than outlining the expectations, the model details stakeholders’ expectations during each sprint. In the face of these expectations, the development team works towards achieving a potential increase in the value of the costing system, such as accuracy of improved product costs, the effectiveness of supporting cost reduction, and overall efficiency in executing business operations. The planning stage usually resolves three basic questions: expectations of the project’s funders, the progress of the project at the end of each sprint, and the potential benefits of the project. Addressing these queries involves regular meetings between team members. Therefore, In SCRUM, a costing system can be planned to establish a flexible and holistic system that addresses organizational needs.

Executing a costing system using SCRUM and implementing projects take into account several critical success factors. One of these factors is related to the project team, which includes team members’ localization and the possibility of working remotely. In the first case, SCRUM principles ensure a sufficient workspace for effective management of the project. Creating enough space for the project’s team members has a positive impact since they work together and communicate with ease to support continuous improvement initiatives (Jimenez et al., 2020). The created synergies and teamwork are essential for the successful implementation of the project. Ideally, team members bring their separate areas of competence that contribute to information flow, communication, and organization. Furthermore, SCRUM synchronizes teams to work remotely by fostering communication, dependency, and contact between dependent teams (Jiménez et al., 2020). Proper flow of communication is key for executing urgent and unexpected tasks related to the costing system. In the same vein, dependency minimized possible delays that result from the many procedures involved (Jiménez et al., 2020). On the other hand, the dependency between project teams facilitates adaptation to dynamic conditions due to other teams’ feedback. Thus, executing projects using the SCRUM model focuses on improving human factors inherent in the management and implementation of a costing system.

DSM

DSM’s planning process is iterative and incremental utilizes several principles to meet business needs. The reason for active user involvement is to keep the project focused and avoid experiencing technical issues. Vast knowledge from different users participating in the planning phase guides throughout the project’s lifetime. Furthermore, planning requires users to have deep knowledge of the business needs. The interaction among users also ensures that the system passes the acceptance tests. A typical example of a DSM project for planning and implementation is the Combat Identification Server (CIdS). The planning phase involves putting CIdS into its context by paying attention to the key objectives. The CIdS project comprises three different phases. In the first phase, team members develop the technical design and the subsequent exploration stages using a series of time boxes that detail control and metrics relating to achievements within each time box. Therefore, DSM uses incremental and iterative development approaches to inform ongoing plan achievements.

In terms of implementation, DSM principles test a project for non-functional requirements before passing it to the test cases. Typically, DSM builds CIdS to a high standard using the design and built iteration. Testing the products for subsequent exploration identifies the unmet requirements in the time box (Ozierańska, Kuchta, Skomra & Rola, 2016). CIdS is eventually delivered with the required documentation before being installed in the actual environment (Ozierańska, Kuchta, Skomra & Rola, 2016). In this way, DSM ensures that all the requirements of CIdS are implemented satisfactorily. At the same time, the model leads to a new area of functionality that demonstrates solutions to end users, not to mention separating the non-functional requirements that are less prioritized. In this regard, DSM uses core principles and user involvement to ensure the operational functionality of a product.

ASD

Project planning using ASD focuses on three overlapping phases, including speculation, collaboration, and learning. The planning phase for a project like a predictive data mining application involves business ad data understanding. The planning stage takes a considerable amount of resources and time. According to Ozierańska et al. (2016), the speculation stage of ASD recognizes the unpredictable nature of complex problems, such as predictive data mining. As such, the ASD model emphasises exploration and experimentation. ASD life cycle usually ends by creating an organization’s data house. The implementation stage embraces the diversity of stakeholders to utilize the most effective modelling algorithm. The idea is to ensure a better data mining algorithm.

Benefits and Trade-Offs

Benefits

SCRUM’s incremental and iterative processes have proved beneficial to the company in terms of efficiency, accuracy, and ease. SCRUM model usually plans or a project after testing, and changes can be made once a phase is complete (Kosztyán & Szalkai, 2018). Changes can be incorporated at any stage to improve the outcome. In the same vein, the testing phase is always a hurdle when developing software like a costing system, especially in the face of errors and bugs arising after its development (Kosztyán & Szalkai, 2018). However, testing is done occasionally in SCRUM, making it easier to correct bugs and errors as soon as they are present. Additionally, the model offers optimum flexibility to customize the end product per the customer’s taste and preferences. In addition to this, SCRUM is a team-based model that maximizes cooperation while controlling contradictory interests since its processes develop products with rapidly changing requirements.

Trade-offs

The first trade-off of SCRUM in implementing projects emphasizes individual interactions over processes and tools. Stakeholders must confirm the tools and processes as they are the way to manage products and everything associated (Wagenaar et al., 2018). Focus on the team, and team member focuses on people and their innovation, energy, and ability to solve problems. Another trade-off of SCRU focuses on working software rather than comprehensive documentation (Wagenaar et al., 2018). Essentially, the model has acceptance tests whose primary concern is to report and correct bugs or unwanted functionalities. Additionally, SCRUM responds to changes rather than following a defined plan. The iterative and incremental processes are focused on identifying and correcting changes during the product development process. Therefore, the key to successful project management using SCRUM is team involvement, working software, and correcting changes.

Dynamic System Development Model (DSM)

One advantage of DSM is that it ensures the timely delivery of projects while ensuring flexible workflow. Important events are always scheduled to ensure on-time completion. Wagenaar et al. (2018) observe that while trying to minimize the effects of change in the product’s lifecycle, time is a constant variable. DSM is also associated with the on-cost delivery of products. With the capabilities that allow it to act quickly in the face of customer preference changes, DSM fosters a flexible workflow essential for delivering projects at a lower cost. At the same time, DSM provides a visual means of capturing and organizing activities and communicating them among team members.

As with other agile development models, the DSM framework has several trade-offs. One of these is that the model takes into customer problems instead of business goals. Usually, stakeholders are frustrated when they plan and implement projects based on the organization’s growth rate as customers hardly return after the first purchase (Khan, 2016). The second trade-off is that decisions are based on data rather than lack of it. While the approach effectively produces business solutions, it leaves some issues unresolved, such as the need to remove some non-useful features in the absence of data. Khan (2016) espouses that DSM presents a risk of delay because of the change requirement. The argument is that DSM focuses on heavy planning, which does not allow for changes.

ASD also has several advantages when used in developing a product. Foremost, ASD is focused on the end-user, resulting in more intuitive and better products. The iterative methods incorporate change per customers’ requirements. Second, ASD encourages transparency and openness between clients and stakeholders thanks to the high interaction level. In addition to this, ASD’s processes are scheduled according to time, leading to on-time delivery.

ASD also exhibits several trade-offs, including focusing on user involvement, customers’ problems, and working software. In the first case, ASD does not pay much attention to business goals; rather, it incorporates customers’ challenges to develop a sustainable solution. Accordingly, ASD is much more concerned with working on a product instead of adhering to a systematic plan.

Potential Obstacles

Using SCRUM in managing projects is associated with inadequate sprint duration, which may lead to project delay. SCRUM is also lined with disruption to teamwork. Activities are usually set out, with every team member given the autonomy to deliver (Khan, 2016). In the same breadth, the depletion of funds before completion is a potential obstacle to DSM during the project process. This situation may delay the execution of certain activities necessary for the product’s functionalities. Additionally, the separation of project delivery responsibility may also be an obstacle as some people are more likely to complete earlier than others (Khan, 2016). Delivering a similar project at different times is a recipe for failure, as testing its functionalities may be challenging. ASD is not an exception as it also has to experience potential obstacles in terms of difficulties in solution requirements collection. The modelling tools and language usually inconvenience developers because of their above-average qualification requirements. Management problems may also serve as an obstacle for DSM. Typically, common configuration challenges may contribute to the framework losing source codes or having distribution challenges.

Key Strategies: Solution to the Obstacles

An organization can adopt several measures to address the obstacles identified. One such solution is to plan the project properly and estimate sufficient funds to sustain a project throughout its life cycle (Wagenaar et al., 2018). In terms of different delivery times, project managers should ensure that various project parts are delivered at a go to curb potential delays. In the case of management obstacles, the management could specify the project’s management methods that comply with the standard practices (Wagenaar et al., 2018). In this way, such challenges will have less impact on the project’s cost, schedule, and performance

.References

Jiménez, V., Afonso, P., & Fernandes, G. (2020). Using agile project management in the design and implementation of activity-based costing systems. Sustainability12(24), 10352. doi: 10.3390/su122410352

Khan, S. (2016). Application of Design Structure Matrix (DSM) for managing projects on the basis of constructability. Civil Engineering and Architecture4(3), 91-111. doi: 10.13189/cea.2016.040302

Kosztyán, Z., & Szalkai, I. (2018). Hybrid time-quality-cost trade-off problems. Operations Research Perspectives5, 306-318. doi: 10.1016/j.orp.2018.09.003

Koznov, D. (2011). A process model of DSM solution development and evolution for small and medium-sized software companies. 2011 IEEE 15Th International Enterprise Distributed Object Computing Conference Workshops. doi: 10.1109/edocw.2011.58

Ozierańska, A., Kuchta, D., Skomra, A., & Rola, P. (2016). The critical factors of Scrum implementation in IT project – the case study. Journal of Economics and Management23(3), 80-96. doi: 10.22367/jem.2016.25.06

Wagenaar, G., Overbeek, S., Lucassen, G., Brinkkemper, S., & Schneider, K. (2018). Working software over comprehensive documentation – Rationales of agile teams for artefacts usage. Journal of Software Engineering Research and Development6(1). doi: 10.1186/s40411-018-0051-7

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Question 


There are a number of frameworks that have been used for Agile development and project management. The purpose of this assignment is to discuss how projects are planned and executed in Agile development models, such as  SCRUM, Dynamic Systems Development Model (DSDM), and Adaptive Software Development (ASD). Using real-world examples in your assignment is highly desired. One way to do that is to relate any projects at your workplace or from your research and think about how you, as a project manager, would run the same project under those frameworks.

Evaluating Agile Development Models

Evaluating Agile Development Models

Instructions

Write a 5–6 page paper in which you:

Analyze the manner in which projects are planned and executed under the following frameworks and provide one example for each: SCRUM, DSDM, ASD

Highlight three benefits and three trade-offs for each of the following frameworks: SCRUM, DSDM, ASD

Determine the potential obstacles to using the following frameworks and analyze the major risks and issues associated with each of them: SCRUM, DSDM, ASD

Suggest key strategies from the perspective of a project manager to avoid the obstacles you identified. Recommend key actions that you can take in order to mitigate the risks associated with those frameworks. Provide three real-world examples to support your suggestion.

Use at least three quality resources in this assignment. Note: Wikipedia and similar websites do not qualify as quality resources. You may use the resources above or others of your choosing.

This course requires the use of Strayer Writing Standards. For assistance and information, please refer to the Strayer Writing Standards link in the left-hand menu of your course. Check with your professor for any additional instructions.

The specific course outcome associated with this assignment is:

Produce project results using Agile practices such as high-value increments, continuous improvement, and problem detection and resolution.

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