Selecting the right project management methodology has become a nightmare for many top managers. The selection process of a project methodology is vital towards vetting the job correctly for the management team. According to the definition put forward by Project Management Institute (PMI), project methodology is outlined as a composition of techniques, practices, rules, and procedures which are used by a selected team to come up with a detailed solution to a task. There are a variety of methodologies available for managers to choose from. Each technique has its distinct principles, rules, practices, strategies, and processes. Selecting a project methodology that the organization will implement fully depends on the project being undertaken (Muller 2017, p 17). The chosen method has to ensure efficient use of available time and resources of the company. Although there are numerous project techniques, it is impossible to find a process that will be consummated for all projects; each project comes with unique demands from each other. Plans differ from requirements and scope, hence implying variation in methodology to be adopted for every project. This term paper seeks to discuss the two most favoured project techniques; agile and lean methodology, highlighting their concepts and principles, evaluating their benefits and challenges and finally come up with a conclusion on the best-situated project methodology to be adopted for a specific project.
Agile is a unique procedure which aids chosen teams to give quick and timely unforeseen response to the response they receive from their specific projects. It offers prime possibilities of evaluating the whole project's progress at the development periods. The selected project team analyzes the performance of the project in the frequent gatherings (also called iterations or sprints) they hold (Muller 2017, p 17). Agile methodology is a very significant technique for project developers. It empowers companies to redesign the projects and develop a successful product under agile, the requirements and resolutions evolve periodically through the collective efforts of cross bf unction el and self-organizing crew with their clients. Previously, the agile technique was developed for software operation. It is a response methodology designed to cover up the shortcomings not waterfall technique which failed to address some specified requirements of projects (Larson and Gray 2017, p 16). The primary purpose of the Agile Methodology is to unfold ways of creating software by providing a specific and measurable framework that enhances iterative development. It enables firms to produce high quality and valuable produce from their reevaluated processes hence improving their competitive advantage in the industry they operate.
Values and Structure of Agile Methodology
The manifesto of agile comprises of primary benefits. The principal advantage is that the concentration needs to be more aimed at interactions of crew and individuals rather than the tools and processes used (Heldman, 2018, p 8). Functioning software is of more importance as compared to comprehensive documentation and clients' collective effort is valued more than the contractual negotiations. The agile technique also appreciates quick responses to change of plans rather than blindly following the plan restrictions (Fleming and Koppelman, 2016, p 21).
Principles of Agile Methodology
The development of agile software technique is based on twelve fundamental principles which offer guidance to its development. The guiding principle is to consign client satisfaction through the provision of reliable software steadily. Agile is designed to accept all change of needs regardless of how early or late the project is and deliver functional software within the shortest timespan possible. The methodology also demands close collaboration of business changemakers and developers throughout the development of the plan. Face to face communications are favoured and it lobby's for the constant motivation of the parties involved in project creation by providing a favourable atmosphere of empowerment, trust, and appreciation (Kerzner and Kerzner 2017, p 21). A major progress measurement is a well-functioning software, and the process has to enhance sustainable development, and paying regular attention to quality and excellence in technical creation and boosting the agility of the project. Simplicity is key to effective control of agile methodology, with well-organized teams producing a significant architecture and design needs. The final principle under agile methodology states that the teams need to adequately reflect on the adaptation to be efficient (Heldman, 2018, p 16).
Analysis of Benefits and Challenges Presented In Project Management Methodologies
Advantages of Agile Methods
Improve Stakeholders' Satisfaction and Engagement
The agile procedure generates numerous possibilities of development and project modification during every gathering done by the management and the genuine stakeholder (Heldman, 2018, p 11). Since clients are also actively engaged in the development process of the whole project. Through mutual engagement, the client and the stakeholders together with the project crew give the team the opportunity to comprehend the needs and vision of the client fully. The continued creation of quality software which meets the client's needs all the time builds trust strengthening the relationship between the partners (Heldman, 2018, p 12).
Promotes Transparency and Predictable Delivery
Both the client and the stakeholders are involved in the process from the start (planning) to the end (review session). The free sharing of information between the team and the clients facilitates openness and honesty which promotes transparency (Layton and Ostermiller 2017, p 31). During the iterative meetings, the continuous a sharing of every level development always gives a possible estimation of the completion period and the time required for designing of the software. The software developed is likely to be customized according to the clients specified needs.
Allows Change and Flexible Scheduling
Even though agile methodology aims at delivering the established subsets of the project and its elements, it also provides a room for modification by refining the previous decision and agreements. Once the changes have been agreed upon, they will have to be implemented in the following phase of the software designing. Its flexibility is enhanced when the team has control over the plan (Heldman, 2018, p 19). The controlling ability enables the team to make changes to it whenever it seems to be failing though.
Improves Quality by Focusing On Users and Business Value
One way in which agile has been proven to be enhancing the quality of the project is by breaking down the whole project into easily manageable units. The small groups help the team concentrate on high-quality testing and development. The collaboration of the small units makes it easy to identify any possible mismatches and defects which need real-time fixation (Heagney, 2016, p 17). The breaking down of the project also enables the team to adequately understand what is more urgent for the client business and attend to it with passion and dedication to deliver it. The users' needs are always incorporated together to establish a better understanding of the project. Each engagement brings out the best possible to get feedback which leads to better development of the suggested scheme.
Limitation of the Agile Technique
The Slow Speed of Development
In the agile procedure, every interested party in the plan has to be consulted and their views used to construct the project as a whole. Although this brings about the significant engagement of the members and enables the designing team to develop an exact product as per the needs of the client, it leads to slow speed in developing the project (Tagge, Thirumoorthi, Lenart, Garberoglio, and Mitchell 2017, p 41). A lot of time is wasted waiting for the final responses of the stakeholders which keeps the project team at a standstill waiting for the needed changes before proceeding (Kotaiah and Khalil 2017, p 14).
Since its birth in 1992, the definition of lean methodology has been overloaded with refinements and specifications, but the core explanation of this technique remains to be rational and efficient resource usage within an organization. It aims at augmenting the value of the customer by reducing the wastage of the resources available. The primary focus of this technique is getting more output for the client by employing limited resources into the development project. It is a methodology derived from Japan which implies that as waste is reduced, the quality of the product is enhanced under lean project technique. It gives a classification of waste into three major classes (3Ms); muda, muri, and mura (Heldman, 2018, p 15).
Muda involves removal of waste and focuses on the elimination of activities which add no value to an organization. The trash can either be physical, time or any item that is available but has value to an organization. Muda has characterized wastes into seven primary definitions which include transport, motion, inventory, the process of waiting for equipment to complete a task, the time spend waiting for the arrival of a product, overproduction, over-processing, and defects which are related to the product (Kotaiah and Khalil 2017, p 24). Mura focuses on elimination of any variances present in the workflow while muri in lean methodology aim at the removal of overloads in the processing of a product to reduce time wastage which needs to be minimized.
Principles of Lean Methodology
The primary evangelists of lean methods, Tom and Mary Poppiendieck, delineated seven essential principles to be followed in the lean software development process (Kerzner 2018, p 27). Under the loss principle, any product which possesses a feature that the client is unbothered with then that is a loss. Also, the transfer of the project development from one part to another is considered a failure as it will take quite a good time for a new team to pick up. Training is the second principle who h requires that every employee within the organization be passed through operation education to effectively respond to the needs of the organization performance (Silvius 2018, p 7). Late decision making as possible due to uncertainties linked to the product development process by the team involved. Lean also addresses conveyance of power to the developing unit as they have the technical capabilities to design and come up with a compelling product if given the ability to make decisions concerning the product development (Hobbs and Petit 2017, p 31). Integration of the project development needs to be considered to enable a product to maintain its worth and utility over a long period. The final principle put forward is the "know it all" which requires a developer to be fully knowledgeable about the project being undertaken (Rasnacis and Berzisa 2017, p 27). The codes need to be fast and flexible while the design needs to be simple to use.
Benefits of Lean Methodology
Removal of abandoned materials improves the general effectiveness and efficiency of the development of project management. The elimination facilitates smooth operation of the development procedure which in turn fastens the software development process (Silvius 2018, p 17). The efficiency generated helps in saving of project costs and time which advantageously contribute to fewer resources being input to output a quality product. Ability is sort after in many organizations as it give...
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