Project managers often face long development cycles, constantly changing priorities that disrupt the product development process, and consequently, a final product that does not meet expectations.
Traditional project management methodologies are often blamed for being unable to adapt to the changes which often makes testing products or changing alterations quite impossible. An Agile approach is often considered the perfect solution, especially for projects with multiple changes.
While the Agile approach has many advantages, it is important to note that it is not a “one size fits all” solution and as a result we often see businesses using a combination of Agile and traditional Waterfall methods. These custom Hybrid solutions are usually results of a compromise: having to keep some level of planning and structure while aiming to reap the benefits of an iterative, flexible, collaborative approach.
One of the most popular of these combined methods today is the Agile-Waterfall Hybrid method as described by Erick Bergmann and Andy Hamilton.
The Agile-Waterfall Hybrid model really is a compromise and as such, it has as many advantages as disadvantages. That said, it is often considered a smart approach for adopting both methodologies without compromising too much – essentially, making the best of both worlds.
The Agile-Waterfall Hybrid method in a nutshell
- Implementing Agile-Waterfall Hybrid allows certain software-specific teams to work Agile while hardware development teams and product managers can keep using a traditional PMP/Waterfall approach for the overarching project.
- This method involves tight integration and continuous collaboration between PMP and Agile software development processes and teams from product concept until validation and production. The Agile-Waterfall Hybrid method enables teams to enhance collaboration and thus better adapt to changing requirements.
- The Hybrid model is best suited for reusing software code, when dealing with a series of similar products and when future products must also be considered. In such situations, a quick turnaround time may be needed to keep up the pace with continual product releases. Backlog management is a critical area for successful adoption of this Hybrid model, increasing the importance of adequate software version / release planning methods.
As with all Hybrid models, both sides must compromise. Waterfall development must give up some of the certainty of fixed expectations for the flexibility and freedoms of the Agile world. The Agile compromise is to be creative but with far less freedom, working against a fixed deadline with cost forecasting and thorough risk assessment.
The Agile-Waterfall Hybrid model aims to retain the dependency tracking and clarity of Waterfall, while embracing the strengths of the Agile methodology, providing the flexibility and transparency necessary to adapt to the fast-changing requirements of stakeholders.
Due to its support for both Waterfall and Agile processes and its highly flexible architecture, codeBeamer ALM is ideal for Hybrid software development.
Interested in finding out more? Contact us to book a free, live 1-on-1 demo, or start your free 30-day trial of codeBeamer ALM to see how it could help streamline your development processes. Before you start, let us recommend you watch the webinar recording below: