agile methodology

Why Startups Should Look to Agile Methodology When in Growth Mode

Hiring and team growth are often the first signs that a startup is advancing from the initial startup phase and advancing into a leadership position within the market. While an exciting time, these growth periods can also make or break a company without the right strategy in place.

Even though teams may still be small- to mid-sized, following agile methodology when growing a team ensures any startup is set up for success as a larger company down the road.

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First, what is an agile methodology?

Agile methodologies approach company and product development with incremental and frequent delivery of small chunks of functionality, through small cross-functional self-organizing teams, enabling frequent customer feedback and course correction as needed.

Overall, it helps companies find the right individuals across the world, no matter where they are located. Agile is also about being responsive to both market and customer needs by responding quickly and pivoting when needed.

Mastering microservice orchestration.

Microservice orchestration is a collection of small services with each service having a specific function. These service modules can’t perform well on their own and need some kind of medium so that they interact and share data.

To successfully grow and implement this methodology, companies need to manage teams as a microservice architecture: They run independently, provide services and help each team to achieve a common goal––almost like choreography.

While this architecture is easy to maintain and manage as we unify the business process at the center and in synchronous processing, it can create dependency and sole responsibility. For startups in growth mode, this is not ideal, as oftentimes growth mode can mean turnover and change in responsibilities. That’s why it’s important to remember that choreography and cross-collaboration are key.

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Creating choreography within an agile organization

As the company grows and the complexity of projects also grows, leaders often have to take a hybrid approach. It’s when the choreography helps orchestrators to make sure the services keep running smoothly. Choreography is another important function within a microservice methodology. It works to avoid dependencies while still allowing an individual structure.

This method is a decentralized way of broadcasting data and information and then using it to perform actions. That means every service has a brain of its own and does not require outside instruction.

The asynchronous approach avoids the waiting time which is experienced in orchestration due to the request/response type of processing.

Agile methodology applied in technology organizations

When learning new methodologies, it’s easiest to learn by example. At RAKwireless, this method has shown strong success with our engineering teams. For example, our engineers work on their own and/or in small units when they develop a new product. They’re given clearly defined objectives, and they set to work. Our product manager doesn’t sit next to them to review every move. When they think a product is ready for review, they submit it to the proper discussion channel, where all members can make suggestions and comments.

But at the same time, the product manager is the choreographer and is responsible for juggling many tasks at the same time, with several teams. He or she works on launch schedules for all the products, product materials and their libraries, documentation and marketing support. They are the maestro who keeps all these moving pieces running smoothly together.

This methodology can work well for startups in the growth phase because there is no single point of failure, which leads to faster processing time and each service is flexible and can be added or removed when necessary.

Startups in the growth phase need to plan carefully, and leveraging microservice architecture as part of your talent and team strategy is the best way to ensure thoughtful, organized growth of an organization.

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