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Agile Iteration: The best practice of Agile Project Management

What is iteration?

Iteration in literary term means the act of repetition to achieve a definite goal. In mathematics iteration suggests repetition of function. Each process of repetition is iteration. The use of iteration has been hugely witnessed in agile software development and such was the association that over the years the term agile iteration has emerged.

Iteration in Agile:

Iteration in agile is the agile development cycle which is ideally confined to one to four weeks. The purpose behind the implementation of iteration planning in agile project development is to determine the successful delivery of the desired project edge till the end of the iteration. It ensures that all the user stories are implemented by the agile team within the defined iteration.

How is an iteration plan determined?

Iteration planning is determined by the agile team members and the product owner in the iteration planning session. An ideal iteration planning requires the presence of the entire team irrespective of their roles including analysts, programmers, and database engineers and so on. Besides, the product owner plays an important role in the iteration planning session. The product owner is the one who prioritize user stories and design a roadmap for the iteration. Finally with the acknowledgement of all the participants of the iteration planning, user stories are broken and tasks are assigned to members. Thus, an iteration plan is determined.

Ideal length of agile iteration:

The ideal length of iteration should be preferably shorter. During various surveys conducted on agile practitioners, it has come out that major agile teams prefer iteration length of 1 to 4 weeks. Scrum recommends iteration duration as 1 to 4 weeks. Also the Agile Principles state that “… deliver working software frequently – from a couple of weeks to a couple of months duration with a preference to the shorter timescale”.

How to select the length of an agile iteration?

You will determine the length of an agile iteration based on certain major factors. Also, Agile teams should ideally select the length of an agile iteration plan.

These factors are posed below:
  • The length should be based on the length of the project, the shorter the project the shorter the iteration.
  • Slightly longer iterations for risk involved projects to deal with the uncertain outcomes.
  • Iteration length depending on the frequency of receiving customer feedback as one of the base ideas of agile iteration is to frequently get customer feedback.
  • Enough space for managing urgency should be there in an agile iteration.

This is how an agile iteration is determined. Iteration planning in agile is done in order to gain smooth implementation of user stories in all the iterations of a project.

To know more about agile practices and methodologies, you can join either PMI-ACP online training or Agile Certification classroom training offered by Simplilearn across the globe.