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Adaptive Agile

Adaptive Agile is designed to meet the need of enterprise scale projects and can be considered a hybrid methodology that incorporate the advances of Agile processes to achieve speed to market and the structured discipline of waterfall to manage large and complex projects. It represents best practice for adapting Agile for the enterprise.

Adaptive Agile is Eagle Creek’s recommended framework for executing Enterprise Projects

The most important aspect of Adaptive Agile is in the first three stages, which essentially serve as an opportunity to define the project and its intended outcomes. It is in the definition, design and planning stages that requirements, stories and backlog are organized. The intention is to take a little more time than typically afforded by Agile, for the project team and business users to better define the end product, as the project progresses into the development cycle.

During development, the concepts of agile apply. The team will work in iterations or sprints, each focused on delivering a piece, or part of the end product. These sprints will involve unit testing and some level of system testing and will conclude with a demo to the users. So this is essentially pure Agile, allowing users to touch, feel and try new features, and provide feedback as needed. The intention is to ensure the end product is consistent with the expectations and demands of the end users.

This development via sprint cycles, allow the users to touch, feel and try new features. So early in the process it will be clear if the features are on target or require change. At the end of each iteration there is a small portion of the end product or service that can be shared with customer to obtain early feedback.

At the back end of the process. The focus is on activities that are aimed at ensuring end to end dependencies are accounted for. By end to end we mean, every moving part, from back end data requirements, to business rules and to the UI of every feature and process. These require a much higher level of scrutiny via testing than pure agile allows for. So the intention is to allow for rigorous and well defined testing in stages outside of the sprints.

Features and Benefits of Adaptive Agile

Improved Management of Enterprise Projects
  • Suitable for executing complex projects with high level of interdependencies with multiple systems
  • Project vision can be broadly defined to unify a team around the concept and the stakeholders around business value
  • Preferred approach when the project is guided by standard practices with freedom to adopt other approaches
  • Accommodates small to large projects whereby scale is achieved through multiple small teams
  • Accommodates small to large projects whereby complexity is resolved through frequent communication between teams
  • Project teams can be co-located and distributed. Frequent communication by discussion and documentation is required
Speed to Market
  • Speed and features that deliver business value are equally important
  • Scaled down expectations for managing business value against time
  • Can start with a fixed feature set, but is able to accommodate change
  • Easier to cope with change compared with Waterfall change order
  • Fast moving changes can be quickly coded and tested
  • Reduced time between defect introduction and detection which results in reduced defects costs and higher quality
  • Functionality is available to users to preview faster
  • Defects are revealed quickly enabling zero-defect execution
Flexibility in Requirement Definitions and Process Structure
  • Requirements can be loosely defined. Areas of ambiguity allow for Iterative Development to start and evolve within requirements to reach project goals
  • Stable requirements can be refined as the project progresses and business needs evolve
  • End users of the system are available to validate progress, and confirm assumptions.
  • Facilitates easier transition of individual skill sets to an Agile framework
  • Suitable for executing projects with strong Architectural and/or Non-Functional Requirements
  • Allows for changes in technology stacks as project progresses
Increased User Involvement
  • Work completed will better meet customer's needs
  • Reduced communication gaps
  • Reduced user adoption issues
  • Higher level of involvement and commitment from the client
  • Issues are identified in advance and can be resolved quickly
  • Risks and impediments identified in advance and can be mitigated quickly
  • Easy measurement of individual productivity which ultimately leads to improvement in productivity for each team member