John McVey John McVey Partner - DonRiver, Inc.

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Don't be too 'agile' when implementing network inventory

  • If you find yourself implementing a next-generation network inventory application/solution...and someone attempts to convince you to use an agile development approach (e.g. RAD), don't be won't work!

    Agile development approaches are proven methodologies; however, when it comes to OSS and network inventory...I would strongly encourage a more traditional approach be used.  

    I have experience with three different carriers who tried to use RAD methodology for their inventory program and they all failed because there is simply too much technical information (e.g. requirement specs, design specs, process specs, etc.) that requires significant time and energy to document, update, share and review with other teams, etc.  

    In the end, an agile approach caused too much confusion between teams and resulted in 'shortcuts' being made to meet ridiculous agile/RAD timeframes.  These shortcuts helped contribute to incomplete system requirements / teams unable to complete design specifications....and in the end ...extended delivery timelines...which not surprisingly resulted in the need for more money from business/funding sponsors (think very BIG change requests).

    Stick with the old school development approach when implementing network inventory will increase your chances of being successful.

    John McVey
    About John McVey John McVey works as Partner at DonRiver, Inc.
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  • Gregory Miceli
    Gregory Miceli I generally agree. As the expression goes, "Haste makes waste". While speed is important, the costs associated with having to do revisions because of incomplete specifications must be considered.
    January 21, 2010
  • Ivan Kulakovskiy
    Ivan Kulakovskiy Agreed, John. In my opinion, agile methodology is more applicable when there is a lack of trust between customer and vendor, or when there are simply stakeholders has no vision at all of what they are trying to achieve with the project. In this case custo...  more
    January 21, 2010
  • Richard Coles
    Richard Coles John, I have had similar experiences ( see a recent discussion ). I have a suspicion that anyone that has actually delivered som...  more
    January 17, 2010