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5 Keys to Success with Agile Software Development

Agile software development can be a great tool--if used skillfully.


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In a report titled "Agile Software Development and the Factors That Drive Success," Forrester Research identified key practices that set apart successful agile implementations from those that didn't live up to their billing. The report cautioned, "Agile software development is more akin to a hammer and a chisel: The quality and desirability of the products it yields depends on the experience and talent of the craftspeople wielding the tools."

Forrester's key recommendations for enterprises considering agile methodologies included the following:

  1. "Bask in agile's bright light, but don't be a moth to a flame."
  2. "Embracing inertia is a sure path to business extinction."
  3. "Use agile as a tool, not a religion."
  4. "Get the help needed to handle second- and third-order impacts."
  5. "The devil is in the details."

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