Studies suggest that traditional methodologies for project management are often responsible for the inability to adapt to changes. This makes the testing of products or making modifications nearly impossible. The solution to this problem is believed to be in the adoption of an ‘agile’ approach to project management. This is essentially an incremental, iterative development approach that allows adjustments to be made to products. Hence it reacts better to changing needs of a project.

The birth of hybrid models takes place when a compromise needs to be made between various project development methods. Among the most common hybrid models is the ‘Agile-Waterfall’ hybrid model.

Key Features of the Agile-Waterfall Hybrid Model

  • The implementation of the agile-waterfall hybrid model allows a software team to follow the agile approach whereas the product manager and hardware development team can continue making use of the traditional waterfall method.
  • It is very important to have consistent, tight integration between the two approaches to software development starting from the product conceptualization to the validation and final production. This hybrid approach allows different teams to put down clear requirements and also adjust to the changing circumstances.
  • The Agile-Waterfall Hybrid approach is ideal for the purpose of reusing software code, while handling a range of similar products.

Working the Agile-Waterfall Hybrid Model

If you’re planning to adopt the agile-waterfall hybrid model, the first thing you need to do is to stop pointing out faults in differing processes. There is a need to find common ground so that the approach can work successfully. The various teams involved in the project need to focus on a single goal i.e. offering value to the customer.

In the early stages of project planning, there might not be any problems caused by the differences between agile and waterfall teams. But with the emergence of dependencies and details, the differences between the two approaches could be the cause of frustration among teams. This is because agile teams will plan progressively at every level and waterfall teams will do greater planning up front. They might require commitment and answers from agile teams which might not be available.

In such a scenario, it is vital for project managers, team stakeholders and product owners to connect and communicate as well as collaborate on a regular basis. This will help in achieving the common end goal of providing customer value.