We follow agile methods as far as it is pragmatic to do so. True agility is not following a particular methodology that may float around the ether, but rather select processes that suit your environment and people. That’s what we do.
Documentation changes, and requires updating to align itself with requirements, changes in vision or the codebase. This can be rather heavy to do. We opt for small bullet point lists, vision, and objectives, rather than extensive requirements.
We rather discuss things with you properly and jot down an accurate vision and set of objectives, than be the slave to a document that grows unwieldy.
We use the MoSCoW method to prioritize.
The first steps are all about planning. We meet, discuss and create some light-weight documentation. We may begin a rudimentary design, whether its UI or architecture. Using MoSCoW, we are just as concerned with what we will NOT do, as we are with what to do.
Time for Coding
We design, code and test as a single activity. To us, it’s almost the same activity. Our coders are trained in manual testing, unit tests, and quality control. The code is developed, refactored, designed and tested within iterations. Our iterations are nearly always 5 days long.
The iteration is typically divided into 3 days coding, 1-day integration, 1-day deployment. Of course, this changes with each iteration, functionality being built, the client and or the development context. An existing project that is released never gets iterations with more than 10 days coding without integration and deployment. New projects may have 10-20 days coding cycles but will always include integration and small iterations.
Durations and Expectations
We are always managing expectations and we work together with you to always achieve your goals. Our durations are pragmatic and to the point. Once again the MoSCoW method is used to determine what is necessary and what is a nice to have.
Durations are always different and is gauged on work to be done. Our estimations are very accurate and we have only been caught out a few times. Our constant strive for excellence, ensures our commitments to our timelines.
Time for show and tell
We always aim for the MVP (Minimal Viable Product) and release to clients in various ways. It is commonly similar to the following kind of release schedule:
- Development Cycle
- Development Preview 1
- Development Preview 2
- Alpha 1-n
- Beta 1-n
- Max 5 day Iterations with CI or a slight delayed CI
Our methods have worked for us for over 10 years. We pride ourselves on being the most optimized for budget-to-cost ratio and we can only achieve this with good planning and strict iterations. We deliver on-time (mostly) but always within budget.