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Prioritizing agile benefits and limitations in relation to practice usage
Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Computing, Department of Software Engineering.
2016 (English)In: Software quality journal, ISSN 0963-9314, E-ISSN 1573-1367, Vol. 24, no 2, 447-482 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In recent years, there has been significant shift from rigid development (RD) toward agile. However, it has also been spotted that agile methodologies are hardly ever followed in their pure form. Hybrid processes as combinations of RD and agile practices emerge. In addition, agile adoption has been reported to result in both benefits and limitations. This exploratory study (a) identifies development models based on RD and agile practice usage by practitioners; (b) identifies agile practice adoption scenarios based on eliciting practice usage over time; (c) prioritizes agile benefits and limitations in relation to (a) and (b). Practitioners provided answers through a questionnaire. The development models are determined using hierarchical cluster analysis. The use of practices over time is captured through an interactive board with practices and time indication sliders. This study uses the extended hierarchical voting analysis framework to investigate benefit and limitation prioritization. Four types of development models and six adoption scenarios have been identified. Overall, 45 practitioners participated in the prioritization study. A common benefit among all models and adoption patterns is knowledge and learning, while high requirements on professional skills were perceived as the main limitation. Furthermore, significant variances in terms of benefits and limitations have been observed between models and adoption patterns. The most significant internal benefit categories from adopting agile are knowledge and learning, employee satisfaction, social skill development, and feedback and confidence. Professional skill-specific demands, scalability, and lack of suitability for specific product domains are the main limitations of agile practice usage. Having a balanced agile process allows to achieve a high number of benefits. With respect to adoption, a big bang transition from RD to agile leads to poor quality in comparison with the alternatives.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer , 2016. Vol. 24, no 2, 447-482 p.
Keyword [en]
agile, benefits, limitations
National Category
Software Engineering
URN: urn:nbn:se:bth-6519DOI: 10.1007/s11219-014-9253-3ISI: 000373861100009OAI: diva2:834037
Available from: 2014-12-02 Created: 2014-11-27 Last updated: 2016-05-30Bibliographically approved

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