Agile is an iterative approach to software development that has been around for a while and has transformed how many teams around the world deliver value to their customers. An agile team delivers work in increments – small sets of features that are delivered after each sprint.
We personally believe that through the agile framework, the gap between design and development can be closed. The distinctive perspectives of design, product and engineering are key to shipping functional features that customers love – on a regular basis.
Traditional project management styles build in phases. That way, everything folds into a single but high-risk release and commonly earlier phases are never revisited to make important iterations. Agile instead allows us to analyze, test and review features and revisit them on a regular basis.
Thanks to the continuous releases in the agile process, business results are achieved on a regular basis. We strongly believe in integrating User Experience and Visual Design in the sprints, contrary to a Design phase beforehand. This allows us to stay agile in all departments and close the gap between Design and Engineering – everything is about the product itself.
Based on our experience, we recommend a Visual Design phase of some sort before jumping into Agile Product Development. This allows the designers to focus on User Experience Design instead of fine-tuning visual design regularly. We usually include this phase during MVP Development, a process that builds on the same principles of our continuous process but is much more compressed.
Validating during agile
On some occasions it makes sense to include other frameworks throughout the Agile process and combine it with a Design Sprint when a larger feature set is yet uncertain and not well defined. We can then draw designers from the ongoing sprint without disturbing the Agile process and validate a solution before moving it forward in the product backlog.
Before any agile process, we define a product roadmap if it doesn’t already exist to derive a product backlog from feature sets. From the backlog, the team follows a continuous process:
The team determins what can and should be completed in the upcoming sprint.
At the start of each day, the team comes together to synchronize on tasks within the sprint.
The team shows the results of the sprint after completion.
A review of what did and didn’t go well with actions to improve.
If you don’t have a product team set up already, we will provide you with the resources and processes to successfully design, build and ship features on a continuous basis. We will manage the entire process on our end.
If you already have an existing product team but need support from Designers, Developers or other relevant experts, we can support your team throughout a new or already ongoing project.