14 Advantages and Disadvantages of Agile Methodology and Its Definition

Departments and project managers use a variety of strategies to keep projects, deadlines, and goals on schedule each quarter. Project management with Agile methodology is a way of managing projects so that each part can have the same planning and execution phases before reaching the final product.

Learning more about agile methodologies can help you use different methods of handling projects and products. In this article, we review what an agile methodology is, and its advantages and disadvantages.

Table Of Content

1 What is an agile methodology?
2 Disadvantages of agile methodologies
2.1 1. Difficulty of adaptation
2.2 2. Objective variable
2.3 3. Lack of documentation
2.4 4. Less documented improvements
2.5 5. Goal focus shift
2.6 6. Less predictable
3 Advantages of agile methodologies
3.1 1. Punctuality
3.2 2. Adaptability
3.3 3. Ease of collaboration
3.4 4. Performance improvement
3.5 5. Transparency
3.6 6. Continuous improvement
3.7 7. Higher profit
3.8 8. Work with less preparation

What is an agile methodology?

Agile methodology is a project management strategy that divides a project into phases, driving continuous improvement for each phase. Early in the project, the team cycles through the planning, evaluation, and implementation stages to collaborate toward the various project objectives. As a methodology, the agile project strategy contains four fundamental values, including:

  • Individual over tools: Agile methodologies value working with individual team members in a collaborative effort rather than relying on tools to complete projects. For example, a manager using this strategy could encourage full team meetings instead of running tests with software tools to troubleshoot process problems.
  • Software that works over documentation: While documentation is important in any project for accuracy and accountability purposes, agile methodological strategies generally favor real-time reactions to problems over ongoing documentation. For example, when reacting to a problem in a system, an agile project manager can work to fix the problem before documenting every detail regarding the incident.
  • Customer collaboration over contract negotiations: In agile project management, the group working on the project may prefer to collaborate with other departments or companies than negotiate contract terms or promised materials. This is so that they adhere to the goals set more reliably, rather than changing goals to meet projected results.
  • Change response rather than plan: Meanwhile, project managers using agile methodologies prefer not to change contract terms, they generally prefer change response rather than following the plan completely. For example, if the team realizes that the current plan is not feasible, they change aspects of their process rather than the current goal to help meet the need.

Disadvantages of agile methodologies

There are several drawbacks to using an agile style of methodology in project management, including:

1. Difficulty in adaptation

When switching from one management style to another for an entire department, it may take time to fully adjust to new responsibilities and the style of how projects develop within the system.

Leaders may have some initial difficulty adjusting to the management style, although consistent practice and training can help all employees adjust to new tactics.

While agile management encourages employees to act independently toward goals, consider dividing departments into groups for the first few goals of the project. This is so that each member can consult with others regarding questions or difficulties in adapting.

2. Variable goals

Because agile methodologies focus on many goals at a time, a particular goal may not receive as much focus across projects. Variable goals within a department can lead to a lack of specific goals for a team, which can lead to unknown deadlines and inaccurate costs.

One way to prevent variable goals from allowing unwarranted expenses or missed deadlines is to schedule regular meetings to discuss goals. Another way to unify objective costs is to establish policies regarding expenses in the department so that cash flows follow policies to reduce unforeseen expenses.

3. Lack of documentation

In agile methodological systems, documentation is less important than reactionary planning and progress. This can make documentation responsibilities such as record keeping, billing reports, and saving plans complete more slowly compared to other tasks.

To help improve documentation when using this methodology, consider recording a documented statement at least once a month. If documentation is left behind, emphasizing it on a schedule can help bring it back to its proper importance again.

4. Less documented improvements

Because agile methodological strategies focus on reactionary improvement rather than documented improvement phases, documented success and calculated methodological strategies may not be effective across projects.

While reactionary tactics can be effective for improving processes or products, consider increasing your team’s documented improvement efforts by scheduling regular document checks. Keeping track of successes and incremental progress can help the team get a backward look at goals and next steps.

5. Goal focus shift

Because agile methodologies involve shifting focus based on which parts of the project require the most attention, it can be difficult to direct all team members toward a single goal.

At a later stage of the project, it may be preferable to have the majority of the department members focused on one goal. To help achieve unity of purpose, consider allocating goal-related tasks to multiple department members during the final phase of the project. Unity through allocation can help a department work as a single force, even if only temporarily.

6. Less predictable

Because agile production relies on continuous improvement and customer feedback, departments may not be able to predict profits before production begins.

Agile production focuses on delivering acceptable products to customers as soon as possible, which can make potential problems more difficult to predict over time.

However, using feedback effectively and quickly throughout the process may slightly increase the predictability of product errors over time, especially if the department documents problems during the process.

Advantages of agile methodologies

There are many benefits to using an agile methodology strategy in your department, including:

1. Punctuality

Because it focuses on product placement, agile strategies allow departments to get products to clients as quickly as possible. While product and development processes may not be as optimal as this due to reduced planning stages, agile methods allow for increased progress through reactionary feedback.

For departments that could benefit from producing a stable product first before optimizing processes, agile methodologies are an acceptable approach.

2. Adaptability

Due to increased increments between small product delivery dates, projects can easily change and adapt while under an agile strategy system.

This allows production to continue at an acceptable rate while improving the process continuously. Departments working with agile production systems can adapt quickly to changing demands, even among clients with slightly different preferences.

3. Ease of collaboration

Because agile work requires a lot of feedback between clients and employees, agile methodologies introduce a powerful system for collaboration between customers and other departments.

In an agile system, management encourages employees to think creatively to solve problems and create solutions to emerging project challenges.

Using agile systems in your department can help your employees learn to collaborate with others to produce better products with every feedback they receive.

4. Performance improvement

Because agile departments test product improvements as they manufacture them, department members can quickly react to problems that may arise.

The fragmented nature of production and correction allows agile departments to better understand and fix problems quickly. Using feedback from clients and other members, the department can fix problems quickly before the next production cycle.

5. Transparency

With an agile approach to departmental work, both potential problems and process improvements become apparent at each production cycle. This type of management allows employees to quickly correct errors and improve production details.

Because management encourages employees to act independently in this format, the time between making improvements and implementing them may be shorter.

6. Continuous improvement

Because agile departmental strategy relies on improving processes as they produce a product, improvements can directly affect subsequent products.

In addition, because the agile strategy does not stop production to implement improvements, management encourages employees to act on feedback as soon as possible. A constantly evolving department can become more efficient when they sell products.

7. Higher profit

The agile department focuses on producing continuously improved products rather than perfect products. This allows agile departments to profit as quickly as possible, as each product gain brings feedback back to the team. Because agile departments are production-focused, agile strategies can help teams produce products without stopping production for major improvements or process changes.

8. Jobs with less preparation

Because agile development focuses on product rather than process improvement, agile departments can produce products more quickly than other management methods.

By accepting feedback and making changes from time to time rather than stopping production to make bigger changes, products can be improved without completely sacrificing improvement efforts.

In addition, when starting a production cycle, agile departments value having less preparation required before they can start selling products, saving time between the planning and profit stages.

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