Agile Development and Agile Project Management

Salesforce Consulting Services implements large scale projects using Agile Development and Agile Project Management principles.

Why Agile Development?

The short answer is simply better outcomes, and a final product that is far more closely aligned with business operations.

So what is Agile Development and how does it differ from standard PMP methods?

Imagine a company we will call ABC Manufacturing (ABCM). ABCM needs a custom Salesforce implementation that includes Sales Cloud and Service Cloud, as well as custom public community portal and multiple internal private custom Force.com applications. The scope of this project is global and mission critical and is scheduled to take 18 months in development.

Now consider two tracks of development.

Track A: (PMP) ?Business requirements are gathered (BRD), case studies are completed, a functional spec is created (FRD) and development begins with a core focus of adhering precisely to the BRD and FRD. The project is completed in the 18 month timeframe and a scheduled rollout with training and change management consumes the company for several weeks as the system and users ramp up to full capacity.

This has been the standard approach to large scale development and is still the primary methodology of many development agencies.

So what is wrong with Track A, the PMP method?

  1. It has been found that most users typically don’t attain full insight into the optimization possibilities without prototypes to examine and use in everyday operations. Therefore initial business requirements often fall short of the eventual need.
  2. The lifespan of the development does not keep pace with the business. The completed project is ready for what was needed 18 months ago, not the current business operations.
  3. New change requests render the project incomplete for an extended 6 months as a new BRD and FRD are compiled and project updates move into development.

Now consider Agile Development for better outcomes.

Track B: (Agile) Business requirements are gathered and a functional spec is created however, both are considered as preliminary and evolving documents. A series of iterative prototype systems are rolled out to key user teams and the BRD and FRD are reviewed regularly and expanded as needed to include new insights and operations changes. This approach is used across all deliverables in the project. The end result being a complete total system that is fully in step with current business operations and much more closely aligned with user needs.

Its easy to see the superior outcome of the Agile method for large scale deployments. The larger the project the more you need a comprehensive Agile development approach.

Call (408) 657-6690 to discuss your large project needs and how to achieve a superior outcome with Salesforce Consulting Services Agile Development Strategy.