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What is Agile Methodology?

Last Updated : 11 Mar, 2024
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The Agile methodology is a project management and software development approach that emphasizes flexibility, collaboration, and customer-centricity. It is the latest model used by major companies today like Facebook, google, amazon, etc. It follows the iterative as well as incremental approach that emphasizes the importance of delivering of working product very quickly. This article focuses on discussing Agile Methodology in detail.

What is Agile?

Agile is a project management and software development approach that aims to be more effective.

  1. It focuses on delivering smaller pieces of work regularly instead of one big launch.
  2. This allows teams to adapt to changes quickly and provide customer value faster.

Agile is not just a methodology; it’s a mindset. Agile isn’t about following specific rituals or techniques. Instead, it’s a bunch of methods that show a dedication to quick feedback and always getting better.

What is the Agile Methodology?

Agile methodologies are iterative and incremental, which means it’s known for breaking a project into smaller parts and adjusting to changing requirements.

  1. They prioritize flexibility, collaboration, and customer satisfaction.
  2. Major companies like Facebook, Google, and Amazon use Agile because of its adaptability and customer-focused approach.

History of Agile

In 1957, people started figuring out new ways to build computer programs. They wanted to make the process better over time, so they came up with iterative and incremental methods.

In the 1970s, people started using adaptive software development and evolutionary project management. This means they were adjusting and evolving how they built software.

In 1990s, there was a big change. Some people didn’t like the strict and super-planned ways of doing things in software development. They called these old ways “waterfall.” So, in response, lighter and more flexible methods showed up. These included:

  • Rapid Application Development (RAD) in 1991.
  • Unified Process (UP), Dynamic Systems Development Method (DSDM) in 1994.
  • Scrum in 1995.
  • Crystal Clear and Extreme Programming (XP) in 1996.
  • Feature-Driven Development (FDD) in 1997.

Even though these came before the official “Agile Manifesto”, we now call them agile software development methods.

In 2001, seventeen software developers met at a resort in Snowbird, Utah to discuss lightweight development methods. They were: Kent Beck (Extreme Programming), Ward Cunningham (Extreme Programming), Dave Thomas (PragProg, Ruby), Jeff Sutherland (Scrum), Ken Schwaber (Scrum), Jim Highsmith (Adaptive Software Development), Alistair Cockburn (Crystal), Robert C. Martin (SOLID), Mike Beedle (Scrum), Arie van Bennekum, Martin Fowler (OOAD and UML), James Grenning, Andrew Hunt (PragProg, Ruby), Ron Jeffries (Extreme Programming), Jon Kern, Brian Marick (Ruby, TDD), and Steve Mellor (OOA). They wrote something important called the Manifesto for Agile Software Development. This was a big moment that set the stage for the agile movement.

In 2005, Alistair Cockburn and Jim Highsmith added more ideas about managing projects, creating the PM Declaration of Interdependence.

Then, in 2009, a group, including Robert C. Martin, added principles about software development. They called it the Software Craftsmanship Manifesto, focusing on being professional and skilled.

In 2011, the Agile Alliance, a group of agile enthusiasts, made the Guide to Agile Practices (later called Agile Glossary). This was like a shared document where agile people from around the world put down their ideas, terms, and guidelines. It’s a bit like a dictionary for how to do agile things.

Manifesto for Agile Software Development

The Manifesto for Agile Software Development is a document produced by 17 developers at Snowbird, Utah in 2001. This document consists of 4 Agile Values and 12 Agile Principles. These 12 principals and 4 agile values provide a guide to Software Developers. The Manifesto for Agile Software Development emerged as a transformative guide to Software Development.

Agile Software Development

Agile Software Development is a software development methodology that values flexibility, collaboration, and customer satisfaction. It is based on the Agile Manifesto, a set of principles for software development that prioritize individuals and interactions, working software, customer collaboration, and responding to change.

Agile Software Development is an iterative and incremental approach to software development that emphasizes the importance of delivering a working product quickly and frequently. It involves close collaboration between the development team and the customer to ensure that the product meets their needs and expectations.

What are Agile frameworks?

Agile frameworks are methods of organizing and dealing with software program development initiatives that follow the principles and values of the Agile Manifesto. Agile frameworks intend to supply value to clients faster and extra often, even also allowing groups to conform to converting requirements and remarks.

Types of Agile Frameworks

  1. Kanban
  2. Scrum
  3. Lean
  4. DSDM or Dynamic Systems Development Method ·
  5. XP or Extreme Programming
  6. FDD or Feature Driven Development
  7. Crystal
  8. Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe)

Agile Development Models

The Agile Development Model was primarily designed to help a project adapt quickly to change requests. So, the main aim of the Agile model is to facilitate quick project completion. To accomplish this task, agility is required. Agility is achieved by fitting the process to the project and removing activities that may not be essential for a specific project. Also, anything that is a waste of time and effort is avoided. 

The Agile Model refers to a group of development processes. These processes share some basic characteristics but do have certain subtle differences among themselves.

Agile Software Development Methodology

Agile Software Development Methodology in software development is an efficient methodology that helps teams produce high-quality software quickly and with flexibility. Agile is not just a methodology; it’s a mindset. At its core, Agile values individuals and interactions, working solutions, and customer collaboration over strict processes and comprehensive documentation. It acknowledges that the needs and priorities of a project may change, emphasizing the importance of adaptability and continuous improvement.

What is Agile Product Management?

In simple terms, Agile Product Management is a concept and approach that focuses on speed while taking the demands of customers into account throughout the product development life cycle. As compared to traditional Waterfall approaches, which follow a ‘linear and sequential’ process, Agile uses iterative cycles of operation; developers can return to customers for feedback or modifications constantly. That is a mindset that prioritizes people and interactions over processes and systems, working products over detailed documentation, and customer collaboration over contract negotiation.

What is Agile Project Management?

Agile Project Management is a revolutionary approach, that is aimed at continuously delivering solutions for the changing requirements of the project in a spiral way.

  1. It was established by the Agile Manifesto’s principles, calling for iterative and incremental development of the project into manageable sprints that create potentially shippable increments.
  2. Agile Project Management is the concept of being agile and agile method in the new challenges of advanced projects, concerning its community-oriented spirit, planning flexibility, and ongoing progress.

Agile Software Testing

Agile Testing is a type of software testing that follows the principles of agile software development to test the software application. All members of the project team along with the special experts and testers are involved in agile testing. Agile testing is not a separate phase and it is carried out with all the development phases i.e. requirements, design and coding, and test case generation.

Agile Methodology Advantage and Disadvantage

The main advantage and disadvantage of agile methodology are:

  • Advantage : Agile methodologies allow for flexibility and adaptability in responding to changes. Teams can easily adjust their plans and priorities based on evolving requirements or feedback during the project.
  • Disadvantage: The iterative and adaptive nature of agile can sometimes lead to uncertainty, especially in projects with unclear or rapidly changing requirements. This may pose challenges in estimating timelines and costs accurately.

Agile vs Waterfall Methodology

Agile is like a good fit for projects that need to be flexible and change a lot, such as making computer programs. It works well when talking with customers and making improvements bit by bit are really important. On the other side, Waterfall is just right for projects that have clear steps and simple, straight-ahead plans. It’s like following a recipe step by step. So, if your project is all about changes and surprises, go for Agile. But if it’s more like following a clear plan without many surprises, Waterfall is the way to go.

Life cycle of Agile Methodology

The Agile software development life cycle helps you break down each project you take on into six simple stages:

Lifecycle of Agile Methodology

1. Requirement Gathering

  • In this stage, the project team identifies and documents the needs and expectations of various stakeholders, including clients, users, and subject matter experts.
  • It involves defining the project’s scope, objectives, and requirements.
  • Establishing a budget and schedule.
  • Creating a project plan and allocating resources.

2. Design

  • Developing a high-level system architecture.
  • Creating detailed specifications, which include data structures, algorithms, and interfaces.
  • Planning for the software’s user interface.

3. Development (Coding)

Writing the actual code for the software. Conducting unit testing to verify the functionality of individual components.

4. Testing

This phase involves several types of testing:

  1. Integration Testing: Ensuring that different components work together.
  2. System Testing: Testing the entire system as a whole.
  3. User Acceptance Testing: Confirming that the software meets user requirements.
  4. Performance Testing: Assessing the system’s speed, scalability, and stability.

5. Deployment

  1. Deploying the software to a production environment.
  2. Put the software into the real world where people can use it.
  3. Make sure it works smoothly in the real world.
  4. Providing training and support for end-users.

6. Review (Maintenance)

  1. Addressing and resolving any issues that may arise after deployment.
  2. Releasing updates and patches to enhance the software and address problems.

When to use the Agile Methodology?

It is particularly well-suited for projects and organizations where the following conditions or needs are present:

  1. Unclear or Changing Requirements: Agile is great for projects with requirements that aren’t well-defined or might change.
  2. Complex Projects: It’s good for big, complex projects by breaking them into smaller pieces.
  3. Customer Focus: Use Agile when making customers happy is a priority and you want to involve them throughout.
  4. Quick Time-to-Market: If you need to get your product out fast, Agile can help.
  5. Small to Medium Teams: Agile works well for teams of a few to a few dozen people.
  6. Team Skills: It’s best when you have a mix of skills in your team, like development, testing, design, and more.
  7. Collaboration: Agile promotes working together and open communication.
  8. Regular Updates: If you want to check progress often and make changes as needed.
  9. Transparency: Agile emphasizes being open and clear with everyone involved in the project.
  10. Risk Control: It helps manage risks by tackling issues as they come up.
  11. Innovation: If you encourage trying new things and learning from experience, Agile supports that.
  12. Continuous Improvement: Agile fosters a culture of always getting better over time.

Agile Methodologies vs Traditional Approaches


Agile Methodology

Traditional Approach


Agile is like building a flexible and adaptable treehouse in stages.

Traditional approaches are like constructing a house with a detailed blueprint.

Chronology of operations

Testing and development processes are performed concurrently.

Testing is done once the development phase is completed.

Organizational structure

It follows iterative organizational structure.

It follows linear organizational structure.


Agile encourages face-to-face communication.

Traditional approach encourages formal communication.

Number of phases

It consists of only three phases.

It consists of five phases.

Development cost

Less using this methodology.

More using this methodology.

User requirements

Clearly defined user requirements before coding.

Requires interactive user inputs.

Benefits of Agile Methodology

The advantages of the agile model are as follows:

  1. Immediate Feedback: It allows immediate feedback, which aids software improvement in the next increment.
  2. Adapts to Changing Requirements: It is a highly adaptable methodology in which rapidly changing requirements, allowing responsive adjustments.
  3. Face-to-Face Communication: Agile methodology encourages effective face-to-face communication.
  4. Time-Efficient: It is well-suited for its time-efficient practices, which help in delivering software quickly and reducing time-to-market.
  5. Frequent Changes: It effectively manages and accommodates frequent changes in project requirements according to stakeholder convenience.
  6. Customer Satisfaction: It prioritizes customer satisfaction.
  7. Flexibility and Adaptability: Agile methodologies are known for their flexibility and adaptability.

Limitations of Agile Methodology

The disadvantages of the agile model are as follows:

  1. Less Documentation: Agile methodologies focus on less documentation; it prioritizes working on projects rather than paperwork.
  2. Challenges in Large Organizations: Busy schedule of clients can make daily meetup and face-to-face communication difficult.
  3. Need for Senior Programmers: It may require experienced programmers to make critical decisions during the development of software.
  4. Limited Scope Control: It has less rigid scope control, which may not be suitable in certain situations.
  5. Predictability: Compared to more structured project management methods, it may lack predictability.

Popular Agile Tools for Software Development

An Agile Tool for software development is a software application or a platform that enables the teams to manage and track the Agile project more efficiently.

Some popular agile tools are:

  1. Jira
  2. ClickUp
  3. Mural
  4. Kanbanize
  5. GitHub
  7. Jenkins
  8. Shortcut
  9. Asana
  10. Planbox

Agile Software Development Interview Questions

In this article on ‘Agile Software Development Interview Questions,’ we will look at key features of Agile methodology and ask questions that will help you land the job you want in this exciting and in-demand industry.


In conclusion, the Agile model is like building a project in small, flexible steps. It’s about being quick to adapt, working closely with customers, and delivering value in small doses. This approach has become popular for many companies because it helps them meet changing needs and make customers happy.

Use the Agile model when your project needs to be flexible, your customers’ needs might change, and you want to deliver small parts of your project regularly to make them happy. It’s like building a puzzle piece by piece, adapting as needed.


1. What is Agile Methodology?

Agile methodology is the type of methodology in which a user can see something quickly. It is the iterative as well as its incremental process. It prioritizes user collaboration, responding to change and delivering the software product in short time.

2. How does Agile Methodology work?

Agile breaks the project into smaller modules, each module will be maintained by team members and deliver those modules in a shorter time to the customer. This allows a regular feedback loop.

3. What are the benefits of the Agile Methodology?

Customer satisfaction, time to market early, flexibility, change to freedom and team collaboration are some benefits of Agile Methodology.

4. Is Agile Methodology being suitable for all the projects?

Agile methodology is well-suited for the projects in which requirements are unclear and keep changing according to stakeholder convenience.

5. What is the framework of Agile Methodology?

The framework of the Agile Methodology is Scrum, Lean, Kanban and Extreme Programming and more. These provides rules and guidelines for the implementing the Agile Methodology in different ways.

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