A report published by Digital.ai, the parent company of CollabNet VersionOne, finds 43% of organizations have increased their reliance on agile application development methodologies in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, with 15% saying it has increased significantly in the last 90 days.
The report also notes 33% of respondents say they have increased or expanded Agile adoption in the last 90 days to help manage distributed teams, while 55% said their company plans to increase the use of agile in the next 12 to 14 months.
Based on a pair of surveys conducted prior to and after the pandemic started, the 14th annual “State of Agile” report also finds 60% of respondents credit agile methodologies with having helped increase speed to market, while 58% say it has improved team productivity. Another 41% say they are also better able to manage distributed teams.
Mike O’Rourke, chief research and development officer for Digital.ai, said there is a clear correlation between the ability to manage distributed application development teams and successfully navigating the pandemic now that most application development and deployment teams are working from home.
Many of those teams are also seeing application development deadlines being moved up as organizations prioritize digital business transformation initiatives that now are core to any business continuity strategy.
That shift is also accelerating a shift toward focusing more on business metrics for measuring success as defined by, for example, the Scaled Application Framework (SAFe), said O’Rourke, noting as a result, there’s also a lot more focus on value stream management across the enterprise as business and IT teams work closely together. The survey finds just over half of the respondents report their organization has either already implemented value stream management (VSM) or are planning to do so.
The survey also finds more focus on risk and compliance, with the number of respondents identifying and measuring technical risk prior to deployment increasing 54%, while the importance of automated audit compliance and governance across control points increased 10% year over year.
Perhaps most surprising, the survey finds reducing project cost is cited as an important reason for adopting agile by only 26% of the respondents, a 41% drop from the previous year. The number of organizations focused on release planning decreased by 11%; however, organizations focusing on product road mapping increased 9% over the previous year. The survey also finds slightly more respondents are using automated acceptance tools (3%). Another 12% said they plan to adopt agile project management tools in the future.
It’s not clear whether increased focus on application development might result in bottlenecks when it’s time to deploy those applications. Organizations that have already embraced best DevOps practices alongside agile development methodologies will naturally be in a better position to deploy applications. At the same time, increased focus on digital business transformation is likely to accelerate the adoption of both agile development methodologies and best DevOps practices across the enterprise.
In fact, it’s arguable that organizations that are not able to build and deploy applications adroitly may soon find they are unable to compete at a time when software development has become critical to their survival.