Agility

Let me start a topic on a subject that’s been bothering me for some time now.

I’ve been partaking of the Agile/Scrum methodology at work this past couple of years. It is said that Agile is hard to master. I do not think that what I am experiencing is Agile but something else; In comparison to other software development life cycle methodologies I’ve used,  what I am currently doing appears lax and minimalist, requirements often totally inadequate and use of tasking by the development team as thinly disguised micro management. There’s often no project plan or even an awake project manager; the scrum master is hectoring in tone when the burn down chart shows trouble, and communications across teams is poor. We prefer conversations to documentation but since the conversations are not written down and the User Stories are seldom updated, it’s a mess.

I am going to being exploring what Agile/Scrum really is and why it appears so wildly popular. In my place of work it seems mostly popular among those who are not active participants; the business stakeholders and middle/upper management. From a developer’s perspective, it appears arbitrary, incomplete, sloppy and the cause of significant decline in quality. We are supposed to welcome new requirements as we go along but we are also working to a monthly release schedule where complete features have been promised and so we’re often working evenings and weekend to accommodate the poor decisions of business stakeholders.

Discuss.