Agile and DevOps processes are popular and most well-run software development companies appear to have these processes or are working to incorporate them into their culture. One guiding principle unites all Agile processes: incremental software development. In their most basic form, Agile methodologies focus on developing an MVP that will meet the needs of your business.
While DevOps encourages the rapid deployment of new features and products using continuous integration and deployment (CI/CD) methodologies, this approach may result in the release of unstable software that can negatively impact users' experiences. This is because some changes may introduce unforeseen bugs that require more time to fix, leading to a potential loss of revenue, reputation, and customer trust.
To avoid such situations, it's important to incorporate testing and quality assurance into the DevOps process. This can be achieved by implementing automated testing and monitoring tools that identify potential issues before they are released to customers. This approach allows you to maintain a high level of product quality while still releasing new features and products rapidly.Moreover, adopting a data-driven approach to product development can help in making informed decisions about what features or capabilities to add, what to remove, and how to improve the product. By using analytics tools to monitor user behavior and gather feedback, you can identify patterns and trends that indicate where the product needs to be improved. This approach ensures that the product evolves to meet the changing needs of users, resulting in higher levels of customer satisfaction and engagement.
DevOps and Agile development are effective strategies for rapidly releasing new features and products. However, to ensure that the product maintains a high level of quality and stability, it's crucial to incorporate testing and quality assurance into the process. Additionally, adopting a data-driven approach can help in making informed decisions that improve the user experience and meet the changing needs of users.
Architecture is falling out of favor
When building a product incrementally, it can be easy to overlook the importance of a strong and solid systemic architecture. The focus is often on creating a minimum viable product (MVP) as quickly as possible and making incremental improvements to add necessary capabilities. Unfortunately, this approach can result in a loss of focus on building a robust and scalable architecture that takes into consideration fundamental issues such as resiliency and scalability. Every change to the product without a solid systemic architecture can make it increasingly difficult to support, expand, and scale as the product grows and evolves.
While an MVP is a valuable strategy for building the right product, it's essential to maintain a focus on the overall architecture strategy, even when building incrementally. DevOps processes and Agile development enable rapid development and deployment of features, but this can often lead to a backlog of technical debt. Although this approach may provide immediate benefits, the long-term costs can be significant. As a result, it's crucial to understand how decisions made today will impact the overall architecture strategy in the long term.
Taking shortcuts for the sake of convenience is reasonable, but it's essential to be aware of the true cost of those shortcuts and understand when and how they will need to be paid. This requires having a strong architectural focus from the outset and continuously considering the long-term architectural impact of every decision made throughout the development process.By maintaining focus on architecture strategy, businesses can ensure that they are building a product that is both functional and scalable. It enables businesses to anticipate potential challenges and address them before they become significant issues, resulting in a more stable and efficient product.
Additionally, maintaining a strong architecture strategy allows businesses to adapt to changes in the market quickly and respond to evolving customer needs.In summary, while building an MVP and incorporating incremental development and deployment are critical strategies for building the right product, it's equally important to maintain a focus on overall architecture strategy. By doing so, businesses can ensure that they are building a product that is scalable, efficient, and capable of meeting evolving customer needs.
Keep a long-term perspective
How will you do it? Even if you are only building an MVP, having someone on the team who "owns" the overall systemic architectural vision of the product is the simplest way. This professional should be kept apart from the Agile process. Their long-term vision of what you want to build must be developed and maintained. While the rest of the team adapts and adjusts the product quickly, this professional must think longer term to ensure that the development team's short-term decisions do not result in unacceptably high long-term costs. This vision can and should evolve to meet the company's changing business needs over time, but it should do so at a much slower pace than the rest of your development team.
Creating a perfectly balanced MVP is an inherently difficult skill to master. The elements that must come together to ensure its success, from assembling a skilled team to developing your own key differentiator, are constantly changing.Although you may not be able to cover every eventuality, you can learn about the best practices so that you are ready to face any challenges that arise.
If you run into any other issues and need assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us! With extensive experience assisting clients in the development of MVPs, DevPals team is uniquely positioned to advise you on the best development model.