What Is the Actual Cost of Agile

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This topic contains 1 reply, has 1 voice, and was last updated by  Paul Boos 6 years, 7 months ago.

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  • #155611

    Bill Brantley

    This article describes the time commitment of customers in developing stories and the need for a full-time story writer. What other costs are there (time, money, resources, etc.) in doing an agile project? How do you explain these costs to the stakeholders?

  • #155613

    Paul Boos

    I’d explain that the costs are roughly the same as what you would see with a traditional approach. You see, the (probably many more) business analysts will disperse and interview the user/customers and then also have to find some mechanism to reconcile disparities (this is usually far from transparent). Or you’ll bring everyone together in several group workshops then usually have to deal with the time arguing among different viewpoints (if people don’t hold back).

    Using an Agile approach and getting a committed customer (and in particular a product owner), you take about the same time, but entrust the growth of your product to the business as opposed to having some form of reconciliation occurring within IT. Additionally, you are only performing the story development just in time; if you deliver enough value early, you can defer the costs. You also reduce the risk of getting things wrong due to having captured everything upfront and the environment changing.

    I view using an Agile approach and stories not having a cost reduction effect, but a risk reduction effect:

    – more clarity of requirements

    – more control to the business (and thus meeting more user’s needs)

    – smaller chunks

    Hope that helps!


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