Agile project management is a highly flexible approach to running a project. It places greater emphasis on adaptability and collaboration than traditional, ‘waterfall’ methods of project management (such as PRINCE2).
Agile project management training is now available to students who are seeking professional agile project management qualifications.
Waterfall methods normally assume that the requirements of the project are known at the beginning of the project. By contrast, agile project management assumes that most requirements will only become clear when the deliverables are being developed and tested. Managing a project using an agile method means that you expect and can accommodate frequent additions and alterations to the requirements during the project.
If the precise specification of your project’s deliverables cannot be determined at the outset and is likely to change a number of times, agile project management can help you to keep your project on track. It is particularly useful for running software development projects, since most of the requirements are unlikely to become apparent until prototypes of the software have been developed. For example, during the first trial run, users might discover a flaw or find that a modification is needed in order to improve the prototype’s functionality. Such issues can then be addressed with a modified version of the prototype, ready for the second trial run, which may in turn reveal that more alterations are required, and so on.
During an agile project, information about the deliverables’ specification is gathered incrementally. The final version of the deliverables would be almost impossible to predict at the beginning of the project, since so much depends on the responses of users involved in the testing and development work.
Because of the importance it places on collaboration and adapting to frequent changes, agile project management can be the ideal choice for either relatively small, short projects on which product development is key or larger projects with a diverse group of end users. When you need an alternative to traditional project management styles, look no further than agile project management.