DevOps and Agile Culture
Updated: May 8
Every software development project should have a structured approach to it. The structure of work that the organization uses is called a methodology. A perfectly implemented methodology can accelerate the workflow in your organization and enhance team collaboration. What’s more, each methodology reveals the potential of the team on a project in its own way. Therefore, let’s discuss some of the most used software development approaches - DevOps and Agile. The fact is that we should not compare them, as they are not mutually exclusive. So, we would like to show you how to make use of both within your organization.
DevOps is the leading methodology practiced by 47% of software development companies. “DevOps” consists of two words: development and operations. It means that the team orchestrates the whole software development lifecycle. E.g., they design, implement, deploy, monitor, fix problems occurring, and update the software. The DevOps team is the owner of both the code and the infrastructure this code runs on. The team’s responsibility includes taking care of the best end-user experience and, at the same time, eliminating production issues.
DevOps Philosophy and Scope
Being a methodology at its core, DevOps cannot be treated as a technology. And buying DevOps tools does not mean you can name them DevOps as that would be completely wrong. These are just the tools that complement practice and not vice versa.
The essence of DevOps is building a culture of shared responsibility, transparency, and faster feedback. Here, cross-disciplinary teams collaborate to develop and deliver top-notch software. Technologies are simply the tools that enable this at 100%.
Like DevOps, Agile also offers both structure and framework to enhance the delivery process. However, there’s still a great difference. Let’s find out what makes Agile stand out as the second most practiced methodology in the world.
In 2022, Agile was the second most-used methodology in the world, with 37% of software development companies practicing it. The Project Management Institute (PMI) says the goal of the Agile approach is to create early measurable ROI through defined, iterative delivery of product features.
The most interesting fact about Agile is that the customer can change requirements whenever there’s a need. Agile’s flexibility of a kind allows the customer to be extra competitive in the market.
Agile Philosophy and Scope
The four core values of Agile software development as stated by the Agile Manifesto are:
individuals and interactions over processes and tools;
working software over comprehensive documentation;
customer collaboration over contract negotiation; and
responding to change over following a plan.
The key components of Agile methodology include:
User stories - small, self-contained units of the development with a specific project goal. Every user story is written from the user’s perspective in a fixed format: User persona → action → goal. I.e. I am a user persona. I perform this or that action to accomplish a goal.
Sprints - small iterative projects lasting from 2 to 4 weeks. Teams gather at sprint planning meetings, determine tasks, and then work on these tasks till their completion. Sprints repeat continuously up to the point all the product features are ready.
Daily stand-up meetings - a 10-minute talk among the team members that occur daily for the team to be on the same page with regards to the project and informed about further development tasks. Also, there is an Agile board tool that allows the team to be aware of the project's progress. This tool adds project requests that become stories in the backlog. Each task receives the estimated story points at the Agile planning sessions.
As a philosophy, Agile has numerous manifestations:
Dynamic System Development Method
Let’s talk about the most popular manifestation – the Scrum method in Agile. While Agile is an approach to project management, Scrum appears to be a method used to implement it.
Scrum Project Management
Scrum is one of the types of Agile methodology, which sets a process of work identification, task distribution means to carry out work, and the exact timing of completion. In Scrum project management, the project has a lifecycle, a project team, project artifacts, and commitments.
The project lifecycle includes:
Scrum project methodology - a set of sprints, where the project team identifies what part of the project scope to complete up to the next sprint.
Sprint review and retrospective - a demo session, which aims to show the work done to the client at the end of every sprint. The sprints repeat until the scope of the project is covered entirely.
The project team consists of a:
Product owner - a person with the product vision who also sets the priority for backlog tasks.
Scrum master - a supervisor of the project team, who ensures they follow the Scrum methodology.
Developers - a team assembled from different departments possessing different knowledge and skills within the IT field.
Scrum artifacts are helpful methodological items that assist in managing work correctly. These are:
Product backlog - a list of product-based tasks that have a goal and emerge throughout the development process.
Sprint backlog - items from the product backlog that the team selects for the sprint together with a plan of increment delivery up to meeting the sprint goal.
Increment - completed sprint backlog items during the sprint and the value of all the previously completed increments. Any increment is the version of the product that is a recognizable, visibly improved, and operating version of the product.
Scrum commitments ensure quality by keeping the team focused on delivering value to its users. These are:
Definition of "done" - the delivered increment needs to meet a standard of quality. However, the shared understanding of what is “done” differs between organizations and teams.
Sprint goal - a specifically set purpose for the sprint backlog, which focuses on what needs to be done and why.
Product goal - an idea of the product's overall objective. The team can have multiple product goals during SDLC, but one at a time.
These features make DevOps and Agile the most practiced methodologies. With the right implementation, your organization can succeed in software development and offer the best development experience to your clients.
Our Experience with DevOps and Agile
Sencury's development practices include various methodologies and practices. We engage in strategic decision-making using a particular approach and build our development strategy on flexibility and mutual success factors.
Sencury seeks to meet clients’ project lifecycle model expectations addressing each client’s specific requirements to be informed on project progress, schedule, budget status, test summary, mitigation risk strategy, etc. So far, we have successfully implemented a combination of different project management methodologies on various projects, using classical DevOps, Agile, Scrum, SAFe, Waterfall, Kanban, and other methodologies.
If you are in need of expert advice on what methodology to choose and how to implement it into your workflow – contact us today and succeed tomorrow!