Agile Assessment Methods and Approaches

Agile Assessment Methods and Approaches

Mina Ziaei Nafchi (Islamic Azad University – Boroujen, Iran) and Taghi Javdani Gandomani (Islamic Azad University – Boroujen, Iran)
Copyright: © 2016 |Pages: 10
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-9858-1.ch009
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Agile methods are widely used in software companies in recent years. Many software companies are replacing their traditional development methods with agile methods. Nonetheless, measuring agility that they have achieved has been a topic of debate. Software teams and companies need to know how agile they are or how much is the agility degree of their organization. Unlike traditional methods in software development, there is no standard or universal model (like CMM/CMMI) to measure maturity of agile teams and software companies. So far, only a few methods and tools have been proposed to measure the agility of software companies. The main aim of this chapter is introducing the structure and main features of the existing agile assessment methods and providing a brief discussion on drawbacks of these methods. This chapter tries to elucidate the actual position of agility measurement methods in measuring agility degree of companies who are trying to adapt to agile methods and practices.
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Agile Transformation Process

After creating Agile manifesto (Beck et al., 2001), many software companies and engineers have been interested in adopting agile methods in their development process. Most of them found agile methods as a helpful solution to cope with the inherent problems of traditional methods including heavy documentation, late release, customer dissatisfaction, difficulty in changing requirements, lack of transparency, and management bottlenecks (Cohen, Lindvall, & Costa, 2004). Indeed, they considered agile methods as a reaction to traditional methods (Boehm, 2002).

Although agile methods officially have been introduced in 2001, prevalence of them started after 2005, when some of the famous software companies started their transformation and reported their success stories (Chung & Drummond, 2009; Laanti, Salo, & Abrahamsson, 2011; Schatz & Abdelshafi, 2005). However, only a few of them changed their development style in all projects and teams.

An important issue is that transitioning to agile is not an easy and smooth project. Rather, it needs enough time and effort (Gandomani, Zulzalil, Ghani, & Sultan, 2013a, 2013b). There are many reports about introducing an agile method to a company in which the authors have explained the challenges, obstacles, hindrances, and problems they faced (Gandomani, Zulzalil, Ghani, Sultan, & Nafchi, 2013; Gandomani, Zulzalil, Ghani, Sultan, & Parizi, 2015). Based on these reports, most of the challenges are related to people and their role in agile methods (Conboy, Coyle, Wang, & Pikkarainen, 2011; Gandomani, Zulzalil, Abdul Ghani, Sultan, & Sharif, 2014). The rationale behind this is that, agile methods are totally different from traditional methods in terms of people and their roles in project management and software development (Cockburn & Highsmith, 2001). In this case, those who are adapted to traditional roles most often resist against new roles as agile methods expect (Gandomani, Zulzalil, Ghani, Sultan, et al., 2013; Nerur, Mahapatra, & Mangalaraj, 2005).

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