… or “Rome wasn’t build in one day”1
Recently I’ve been invited to speak about hybrid development processes in the context of business analysis in Aachen.
One of the points discussed was how to implement a hybrid development process for a new customer especially if
- the customer does not have any experience with agile or hybrid process models or
- the customer’s procurement process does not allow agile or hybrid processes for external projects.
The simple conclusion and recommendation after a longer discussion was to start with something simple that the customer (and you) can handle.
We’ve seen good results with an approach that uses as many features and parts of the hybrid development process the customer can handle at a time; especially if you develop something with a customer who doesn’t have any deep knowledge of agile methodology start slowly.
In the first project we usually stick with the regular waterfall approach (requirements, contract, develop, deliver, accept) and use our agile process internally for development.
While going on with new projects and enhancements implement hybrid features by discussing changes open minded while developing the software. Start with some kind of fuzzy-ness for requirements and pass over to alternatives or a complete agile approach.
Do not rely on a stable customer relationship
Another point: Things change, this also happens while working in an active customer relationship.
Processes, resources and their minds change, and so the hybrid process needs to be adapted to the changes.
Do not think that if the hybrid process is implemented you can use it for a long time without change. If the relation to the customer changes in any of the above cases you may need to go back to start and re-implement the process again.