How We Use the Agile Methodology in 2021

One of the most common questions when creating an app is: “How long will it take to develop?” The complexity of the app determines this to a certain extent. Expert app developers make this possible by using innovative app development methodologies. At Zco, we adopt these methodologies to streamline our app development process to ensure a projects’ quality. The Agile Scrum methodology is where the whole development process separates into different subtasks. Each of the subtasks breaks into other modules for the development team. The team then delivers the finished functionalities through sprint releases.

The Agile methodology is the best choice for complex projects where the client’s requirements can change according to trends and preferences. In the current development environment, having a solid level of organization and means of collaborative communication is crucial. As most developers are currently remotely working from home, this has introduced more complexity into how meetings are done and creates an opportunity for teams to refine how they work together.   

The communication aspect relies on effectively understanding the clients’ requirements and translating this into a fully functioning product. Whether teams use Zoom, Jira, Basecamp, Github, or other solutions, the way you institute your project structure will significantly impact the project’s success coupled with the methodology you use to do the work.

App mockup on a tablet

The agile methodology’s core principles rely on flexible project planning, customer involvement, risk management, early delivery, and continuous project evaluation. Through these agile principles, we execute our app development process to achieve refined products, efficient project workflows, and allocate resources efficiently to meet project deadlines on time. To give you an idea of Agile development’s core benefits, we will summarize what it means for creating mobile applications

  • A client-focused process: The product owner, or client, is involved in every step of the development cycle. Their approval and input allow the following steps to be taken.    
  • Quality control: Ensures the overall quality of the development is tracked and monitored continuously.    
  • Staying organized and motivated: This organization helps to improve the final results and simplifies things moving forward.    
  • Focus on taking smaller steps: You will know what is complete and what is currently being done. It’s incremental and helps to reduce risks.

 Considering the above, we will examine how Zco implements this methodology to build our client’s products.

Sprint Planning and Implementation   

We begin project development with an internal kick-off meeting. The scrum master (primarily our project managers of an agile development team) initiates the kick-off meeting and assigns developers for specific project modules. They monitor and control all development tasks and monitor the project’s status throughout the process. After the kick-off meeting, we conduct the sprint-planning meeting that involves all the team members and the product owner. Here, the product owner explains the app’s required features and functionalities and updates it to the backlog.

Once the kick-off meeting and sprint planning have concluded, we conduct an internal meeting with team members to decide how many tasks they can finish and deliver at the end of the current sprint. When the committed changes have been communicated, the product owner will move the task from the product backlog to the sprint backlog. We conduct daily standup meetings with the product owner, where all the team members interact with each other, discussing the tasks for the day, items planned for the next day, and the possible risks for deviating from the project plan. This helps to expedite the process and ensure that necessary features are delivered on time.

App design layed out on a whiteboard

Design and Development   

When it comes to executing the design and development processes, our team creates the user interface design based on the product owners’ instructions. The coding process starts once we get all the UI designs approved by the product owner. The Project Manager will assign the corresponding tasks during the sprint planning meeting, and development proceeds concurrently through rigorous testing, code reviews, and bug fixing. Any errors in the program are caught at the earliest and rectified properly in each sprint. Similarly, we take regular client feedback and clarifications that facilitate the progress of the sprint.

Developer testing a phone

Testing   

We strictly follow the testing and review process in compliance with our organizational standards and guidelines. This helps us ensure that the app meets internal quality standards and that we provide bug-free products to our clients. Once developer testing has concluded, the test engineer prepares test cases based on what we execute during quality assurance testing. The test cases are then sent to the product owner for approval. After the QA process, Quality Assurance Engineer will send the test result notes to the product owner along with an updated build.

Sprint Releases   

Once the testing process has finished, the test engineer will provide a sprint demo to the product owner. We follow the best industry standards and practices to release our projects. At the end of every sprint, our SQA team initiates the sprint retrospective meeting with the team members and product owners, where they analyze questions such as: “What went right in the sprint,” “What went wrong in the sprint” and “Are there any areas where we can improve?” This helps us rectify any errors and improve the overall development process. We use project management tools in our scrum projects which act as mediums for the sprint project communication and clarifications.

What to Take Away From This   

Most software development companies use the agile methodology, as it tends to be more effective than other, more rigid approaches. Zco Corporation has successfully used the agile development process to create powerful and practical projects for our clients. Get in touch with an account executive today to find out how to use the agile methodology to start your next software development project.