Why Don't Developers in Large Companies Like Agile?

Why Don't Developers in Large Companies Like Agile?

In one of our previous articles, we wrote about Agile, presenting it as the best philosophy and concept for startup companies. We haven't changed our minds - we still think Agile is pretty awesome but we have to admit it doesn't work for all companies and it certainly doesn't work for developers in large companies. Here's why.

Large companies being Agile

Yes, large companies like being Agile but without acknowledging it. In an article written by Steve Denning for Forbes Magazine, you can read how Apple is being Agile without calling the processes 'agile'. Denning used Adam Lashinsky's book, Inside Apple, as a guidance and here are the conclusions:

  1. Steve Jobs is the Product Owner
  2. Assigning major projects to small teams
  3. Clear and defined roles in the team
  4. Working in iterative periods of time
  5. No middlemen

However, Apple doesn't mention "Scrum", "TDD" or any other up-to-date frameworks. Apple makes it work by not giving their philosophy and processes a name.

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So, why don't developers like Agile

If you search a bit online about this problem, you'll see that developers in large companies stated several issues which can all be summed as one - they feel distrust in the working environment.

To them, religiously following Scrum means the following:

  • daily standups are a moment in which the team decides who they should blame and how little has recently been done,
  • retrospective planning is here to help them decide who to blame overall,
  • too much control,
  • not enough time per Sprint.

For developers in large companies, Scrum and all the other Agile frameworks mean two things: TOO MUCH CONTROL and NOT ENOUGH TIME. These are the reasons standups feel like going to the guillotine. These are the reasons developers are writing hacks to make their code pass the review.

You can often hear that there is no time to gather documentation, to update stories, deliver iteratively and keeping up with the shipping.

If the developers feel this way, Agile has not been implemented well.

What's the solution?

As you can see, we are true believers when it comes to being agile. Originally, Agile is a development process, but somehow it turned out to be a business process, that lost connection with the development part. If business and tech don't work together on the same problem, Agile doesn't have a chance to survive.

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Agile is a philosophy that should be adjusted to every company. Since large companies have large issues, they can always use some help. We are suggesting hiring real Agile experts. Or if the company is as huge as Apple, just keep doing what you are doing and not calling it Agile. :)

Thank you for taking the time off your busy day to read this brief article. We hope you found it helpful. As you can see, developers are not haters, they are simply misunderstood and are trying to make a positive change.