Do you know the costly hidden downside of Agile development? 


Planned Agile teams create an interactive prototype of the product before starting development

Frequent reviews during the creation of the prototype gives stakeholders more control over product functionality and final sign-off. 


Developing an interactive prototype has many advantages 

Substantial Cost Savings

The prototype can be developed by a one or two person team. It can save 25% in development costs. 

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Speeds Design

Stakeholder’s can view and comment on the design. Changes can be made in hours; instead of, at the end of a two week sprint.

Reduces Waste

Changes to a prototype have a minimal impact.  Changes to a “traditional” Agile development means trashing expensive working and tested code.

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Speeds Development

The team follows the prototype design. The developers know all the data fields, logic, layout and design. This increases time spent coding and reduces rework.

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Improves Code Reliability 

Frequent refactoring and restructuring can have an negative impact on class, architecture and code stability.

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Promotes Phased Development

Additional features for future version of the product can be planned in the prototype. 

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Promotes Communication

Everyone has the same understanding of what the product will be before development begins. 

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Stakeholder Accountability

Business users are able to test the functionality of the product before development begins.  They can determine if the product will meet the business needs.  




What Is Required?


Management Buy-in 

As a business leader, you will need to spearhead Planned Agile development at your organization.  Time spent on developing the prototype saves time, money and resources. It can increase coding time by 60% and save 55% of the rework needed on a project. 

Stakeholder Understanding 

Stakeholders need to focus on the prototype. If it is viewed as something that is keeping development from starting, your Planned Agile implementation will fail.  The prototype must demonstrate the functionality of the final product. Any questions the stakeholders have, must be addressed before development starts.

Agile Team Buy-in 

Everything that is created, iterated, tested and discovered during the prototype process is something that would be discovered during an expensive development process.  SCRUM Agile developers are anxious to get the team developing the product. Adding iterative prototype design adds additional work and time to the start of the project. The business needs to embrace the prototyping process and convey it’s importance to the development team.

“Creating a prototype isn’t a ‘technical issue’. It is a choice. Your team has the skills to develop software, and they have the ability to integrate prototyping into the development process.”

Stakeholder Accountability

It is understood that, once the prototype is signed off, changes to the product design stops. 

With the prototype, business stakeholder have had their opportunity to shape the product. They are able to test the functionality of the product before development begins and can determine if the product will meet the business needs. Any questions they had, have been answered.  

Business stakeholders must be accountable for any changes requested after sign-off.  

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Phased Development

Planned Agile supports phased development. Additional features can be added to the “next phase” prototype, so that it can be ready once the current product is completed. 

What Changes?

Planned Agile adds a preproduction step to the development process. All of the layout, design, customer feedback, and rework occurs before production begins.

The organization must purchase interactive prototyping software, like Axure RP or Invision

You will also need to hire or train prototype developers.

Why Don't We Do This Now?

The philosophy that Agile is based on, values working software and responding to change, over comprehensive documentation and following a plan. The primary goal of Agile is to deliver software that solves the business problem.  Agile practitioners have rituals and ceremonies designed to incorporate stakeholder feedback during development. 

Planned Agile values preproduction before development.  A great example of this is blockbuster movie productions. Production companies have a preproduction process that storyboards and previs the movie.  The director is in charge of the day-to-day activities on the set. But everyone know what they are doing when they show up that day.  The movie has all the creative elements to make a great film and a plan to make that happen.

Will The Prototype Look 

Like The Final Product?

That depends.  The prototype should focus on functionality and layout. Your interface designer can create a design reference.  A good development team will put on the final touches. 

 It’s almost always not worth the time to create a high-fidelity prototype.   However, if the stakeholders insist on that level of detail, the same issue would have come up during development. Using a prototype to resolve design issues will save lots of time and money.

What Does 

The Planned Agile Organization 

Get Out Of This?

Right now, we are trying to raise awareness with business leaders about the big problem with Agile. We do offer consulting services and we are working on an implementation guide. 

But Planned Agile can be implemented without our help.  

  • Follow the guidelines on the developer page
  • Get a good prototyping tool
  • Build support in the organization among the executive, business and IT teams.

What Are The Next Steps?

Have your development team check out the developers’ page for some tips on how to integrate a prototype phase into your development methodology.  Feel free to contact us with any questions.


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