John Deere Cultivates Agile Software Development Techniques

Until September 2010, all of the software developers who worked for tractor manufacturer John Deere used traditional waterfall development practices. However, “after some serious introspection in our development organization,” the company decided to transition all 800 of its developers to Agile software development, said Tony Thelen, a director in the company’s IT group.

They completed the transition by the end of 2011, and the company saw almost immediate improvements in speed, innovation, quality, customer focus and teamwork. “Breaking work down into smaller increments helped us with some of the quality aspects,” said Thelen. “The incremental reviews of the work allowed us to put more eyes on the software code more often.”

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