Benefits of Using Agile in Outsourcing Projects
The Agile methodology is a powerful and increasingly popular tool in project management. Apart from simplifying the various processes involved in managing projects, Agile increases efficiency and almost always results in projects strengthen. When it comes to outsourcing projects to contractors or independent project teams, Agile methodologies are better than the commonly used waterfall methods. Here are four key benefits of using Agile tools like Scrum, XP, and Kanban in the outsourcing projects:
Allows for Faster Feedback
Unlike the Waterfall method, Agile implies more transparency and enables the project owners to communicate with the contractor and make positive interventions when necessary. Agile project management tools, particularly Scrum, provide tangible outcomes at every stage, which enables project owners and other stakeholders to identify errors, mistakes and problems early enough. Along with it, it allows giving the feedback to the project manager in the real time. That way, changes and corrections are made before proceeding further.
Sprint Meetings, for instance, help in tracking project progress and keep everyone, from the contractor, the project owners to the end consumers on the same page. They occur over the Internet and just like physical meetings, make possible discussions between the various parties. This is especially important in a situation where the parties live in different states or countries where natural communication shortcomings can significantly affect the project.
Higher Probability of Customer Satisfaction
A project’s success or failure is commonly measured by the outcomes relative to the stated goals and objectives. Well, that’s from a theoretical perspective. From a business standpoint, project success is measured by the level of customer satisfaction. Using Agile while outsourcing project management increases the chances of satisfaction in a couple of ways. First, tools like Scrum enable smooth communication and feedback exchange between the project team and the owners which, as explained in the point above, facilitate immediate action. This, in turn, cuts the costs of fixing bugs when the project is already completed. Clients will be much happier if they don’t have to go beyond their budgets to cover errors.
Secondly, Agile project management processes allow the client to follow the project progress and communicate their vision and objectives in a much better and interactive way. This ensures that they get exactly what they want, or something close to it.
High Product Quality
Above everything else, Agile development is known for its high-quality outcomes. When outsourcing, you are essentially ceding some control to a third party in regard to some project’s aspects. As Agile development involves breaking down projects into smaller, manageable tasks, the risks are lower as you can simply cancel a contract if you’re not satisfied with the initial sprints.
Also, the project team, as well as engaged stakeholders, can fully focus on quality work when the project is divided into small bits as it is much easier to measure and enforce quality standards. This is as opposed to working on a large project with no task milestones. Additionally, Agile requires constant and regular communication and consultations between project stakeholders which ensures that mistakes are spotted earlier and dealt with, resulting in an almost perfect project.
Enhances Accountability and Commitment Measurement
Using Jira software, for instance, you can seamlessly perform tasks such as planning for sprints, creating and updating scrum boards and drawing velocity charts to determine your team’s velocity. Working in sprints, another Agile technique, further allows you to monitor and assess your project progress accurately and in real time. In addition, it helps you to measure how accountable and committed your team members are. With these metrics, particularly the team velocity, you can hence set realistic goals and sprint objectives or, if necessary, find ways to motivate your team. For the contractor or external project staff, team velocity data helps to give the client more attainable promises and guarantees that, apart from strengthening the underlying business relationship, leads to client satisfaction.
We hope you have learned something from this article and it equipped you with the necessary knowledge to make the right decision regarding the methodology used in project outsourcing. There are other benefits of Agile that are not covered in the article above, but we’ve tried to make it comprehensive enough to reveal the major points. Come through in the comments with any suggestions derived from your experience!