As companies evolve, so does the world of agile methodologies. Take a look at the biggest upcoming Agile trends that will lead the near future.
One of the key concepts of Agile methodologies is evolution. The ability of a company to adapt to the demands of the environment is fundamental in Scrum, SAFe, Scrum of Scrums, Lean, Xtreme Programming, Kanban, or any other Agile environment in which we work.
Not implementing this ability to evolve the Agile methodology would not make sense. In essence, Agile methodologies are adaptable and meet the demands of new work environments.
Although the use of Agile methodologies in business environments has been led by the software industry for years, the reality is that other sectors have turned the management of their processes and projects towards the Agile transformation, greater productivity, and quality improvements that this type of methodology promises.
In order to fully adopt Agile methodologies, it is necessary to know the trends that are already transforming and will transform organizations. What are those Agile trends that we will be facing in the near future? Here is a list of those that I believe will make the difference.
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1. Agile tools will be simpler
The learning curve of the tools used in Agile methodologies has traditionally been steep, so companies that are leaders in the use of such tools are directing their efforts to the development of more user-friendly interfaces. They are eliminating the complexity of the main functionalities such as Kanban dashboards, task backlogs, and issue trackers.
This change is making the adoption of Agile — and therefore it’s learning — much simpler as more developers become familiar with the use of project management tools. No wonder then that companies are constantly looking for tools and solutions to optimize their Agile practices.
At the same time, more and more companies are moving away from locally hosted tools and turning to Cloud-based solutions in order to benefit from the availability and easy access that this type of technology offers.
2. SAFe becomes more popular
While Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) and Scrum/Scrum of Scrums are the most popular Agile frameworks, SAFe is the one that is emerging the most as a leader among Agile methodologies in many companies around the world.
SAFe’s goal is to provide a general guide to help improve productivity in the company at the organizational level and not just at the team level, which is where Scrum of Scrums is most focused. In other words, Scrum is a useful tool for smaller teams, while SAFe is a more effective tool for development at scale. In addition, SAFe works when companies are more focused on results than on practice.
Without a doubt, this focus that SAFe offers makes it one of the most popular Agile tools among large companies, and it is expected to continue to gain ground in the years to come.
3. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning as key elements in Agile best practices
The use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) in Agile methodology creates a great source of data that when analyzed, allows you to make assertive and timely decisions.
The synergy between these technologies and the Agile methodologies encourages and promotes greater productivity of developers and testers, as AI and ML provide real-time information and offer a clear prediction of when the project will enter the release phase.
The main advantages of AI and ML in Agile are the evaluation of code and associated tests to eliminate bugs, as well as the incorporation of innovative technologies to improve software development times and production release.
4. Continuous Testing
Agile methodologies do not see software testing as a separate or isolated phase of the entire software development process. On the contrary, they conceive it as an integral part of it and essential to check the product’s functionalities and offer quick feedback.
Considering that both continuous integration and refactoring are necessary practices to implement an Agile methodology in software development, and since both techniques constantly modify the source code, it is clear that Continuous Testing — aided by the automation of regression tests — is an imperative need to ensure quality.
Among the main advantages of continuous testing are the early detection of bugs that may jeopardize the software’s functionality, as well as the improvement of software quality through continuous reviews and reports.
The industry is transforming at an unprecedented speed, and concepts such as Continuous Testing and automation also show a significant increase. Both are intended for facilitating agility and effective collaboration among all team members to make releases faster every day.
Take a look at this: Testing in Scrum: 4 reasons why testers are needed from day 1
5. Outside of IT, Agile is being implemented
This Agile trend is growing year after year. If we break down the basic principles of Agile, we find that they apply to almost any organization that handles complex processes for its operation. Areas such as Human Resources, Marketing, and Finance are beginning to adopt some of the best Agile practices that have traditionally been used in IT and software development teams.
The use of Agile methodologies in other areas of the business is helping teams to better manage their priorities, to work in an incremental and iterative way, and to have a continuous improvement mentality open to change and innovation. The most important thing in Agile is to establish the objectives, what the team wants to achieve, and what the minimum number of processes are needed to achieve the results.
A few words left
Since companies are always looking to take advantage of the successes of the past and expand the use of Agile methodologies, there are some very interesting Agile trends that are emerging and others that will appear in the future.
For companies, it will be increasingly challenging to assemble the right teams and scale Agile throughout the organization. However, we must not lose sight of the fact that collaboration and communication will continue to be fundamental elements for the success of the methodology. Regardless of the methodology chosen, we must do our best to help our people work together effectively and funnel their innovation in the right direction.
Before leaving us: How to evaluate the top Agile consulting companies
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