Advances in computer technology are grounded in Moore’s Law, the observation by Intel co-founder Gordon Moore that integrated circuits double in density every two years. As devices get smaller and more sophisticated, intense competition and ever-thinner margins put pressure on teams to be as efficient and flexible as possible. This is why the agile methodology has gained so much traction in software development and other industries that require cross-functional coordination to complete complex tasks.

Agile was formally launched nearly 20 years ago as a methodology for improving team collaboration and more quickly responding to change in the software industry. It has since been adopted by a wide spectrum of organizations, including agricultural equipment maker John Deere and broadcaster National Public Radio. In fact, the demand for product owners with agile skills jumped 24 percent in 2020, according to LinkeIn’s most recent Emerging Jobs report.

Are you ready to take your career to the next level? Given its broad application across diverse professional settings, learning how to harness the power of agile is a smart investment. Thankfully, you can get world-class agile training from the comfort of your own home without skipping a beat.

Simplilearn is proud to introduce the launch of its new Post Graduate Program in Agile, in partnership with the University of Massachusetts Amherst. This comprehensive post graduate program includes masterclasses from top UMass Amherst faculty, interactive peer learning through group projects and discussions, more than 116 hours of applied learning, and several hands-on projects to get you career-ready upon completion.

If you’re ready to embark on a new career, or looking to give your current one a major boost, this program could be a game-changer.

The Agile Methodology and Its Advantages 

At its core, agile is a set of principles used in product management and software development focused on organizing large, distributed projects (such as global software development efforts) into smaller, measurable tasks. By continually evaluating a project’s requirements, plans, and results, teams are able to more quickly respond to change and adversity. 

Software teams typically used the “waterfall” model prior to the advent of agile, which is a linear, step-by-step approach. Waterfall still has value in certain processes, particularly for smaller projects and within teams lacking knowledge of agile or other productivity methodologies. However, the waterfall method can be inefficient for larger projects and is not nearly as flexible as agile (particularly when responding to changes).

In response to these limitations and the need for a more sophisticated methodology to respond to the increasingly complex demands of software development, a group of 17 technologists published the “Agile Manifesto.” The 2001 missive laid out a set of values and principles focused on improving collaboration and speeding up development in a bid to supplant the linear, top-down approach still used at the time by most organizations.

Agile Values

Individuals and Interactions Over Processes and Tools

The idea here is that by valuing individuals (and interactions among individuals), teams are more invested in the process and better able to respond to change than the potential tyranny of sticking with a particular process or tool

Working Software Over Comprehensive Documentation

Documentation is still important, but the agile approach streamlines the technical specifications and plans so individuals (and smaller teams) have what they need when they need and aren’t overwhelmed by too much documentation

Customer Collaboration Over Document Negotiation

Instead of working out the details and deciding which parts of the process are open to negotiation, agile stresses the need to collaborate throughout the process in order to account for unanticipated changes and to make sure all parties are on the same page

Responding to Change Over Following a Plan

Traditionally, software developers regarded change as an expense, something to be avoided; but change is inevitable and embracing change—regarding it as an integral part of the process—yields better results

Agile Principles 

  1. Our highest priority is to satisfy the customer through early and continuous delivery of valuable software.
  2. Welcome changing requirements, even late in development. Agile processes harness change for the customer's competitive advantage.
  3. Deliver working software frequently, from a couple of weeks to a couple of months, with a preference to the shorter timescale.
  4. Business people and developers must work together daily throughout the project.
  5. Build projects around motivated individuals. Give them the environment and support they need, and trust them to get the job done.
  6. The most efficient and effective method of conveying information to and within a development team is face-to-face conversation.
  7. Working software is the primary measure of progress.
  8. Agile processes promote sustainable development. The sponsors, developers, and users should be able to maintain a constant pace indefinitely.
  9. Continuous attention to technical excellence and good design enhances agility.
  10. Simplicity—the art of maximizing the amount of work not done—is essential.
  11. The best architectures, requirements, and designs emerge from self-organizing teams.
  12. At regular intervals, the team reflects on how to become more effective, then tunes and adjusts its behavior accordingly.

As with the implementation of any new way of working, organizations should prepare for growing pains when adopting agile methods. Compared to non-agile organizations, agile’s proven techniques have helped organizations deliver projects on time 65 percent of the time (versus 40 percent), complete 75 percent of their goals (versus 56 percent), and 37 percent faster growth in revenues, according to research by the Project Management Institute.

How the Post Graduate Program in Agile can Help Your Career

Whether you work in software development or virtually any other industry involving complicated processes and the coordination of multiple teams, mastering the agile methodology can help you become more productive and effective. Not only are the salaries for agile-trained professionals attractive, but having an agile certificate will also help you stand apart from the crowd when you apply for jobs or seek promotions.

Simplilearn’s Post Graduate Program in Agile has the added benefit of its partnership with the esteemed University of Massachusetts Amherst, which ranks among the top 25 public universities in the United States. You will have access to masterclasses from UMass Amherst faculty, receive a joint UMass Amherst-Simplilearn certificate of completion, and be given access to the UMass Amherst Alumni Association. 

In addition, as part of the certificate program, learners based in India will receive a six-month membership in the JobAssist program through IIMJobs.com. The IIMJobs Pro membership will assist you with your resume, provide career mentoring services, help you prepare for job interviews, and also includes access to job fairs. 

This Post Graduate Program in Agile, in partnership with UMass Amherst, provides students with a comprehensive framework in agile, beginning with theory and ending with hands-on, industry-relevant projects and a capstone project that you can use to showcase your skills to prospective employers. Throughout the seven core sections, you will learn about agile and scrum methodologies and practices; design thinking; DevOps; and more. 

This program will teach you how to use Jira and Microsoft Excel, two of the most widely used agile tools, and you will learn the following skills:

  • Agile management
  • Product development
  • Product management
  • Project risk management
  • Scrum practices
  • Design thinking
  • DevOps methodology
  • Scaled agile framework
  • LeSS framework
  • DAD (disciplined agile delivery) 
  • Scrum@scale frameworks   

Don’t Delay: Brighten Your Professional Horizons with Agile Today  

Agile already is considered a key methodology among today’s top organizations, but its popularity is only increasing. Take advantage of this trend today by enrolling in this comprehensive post graduate program. Whether you’re looking to improve your value (and that of your organization) or seeking a whole new career, Simplilearn’s Post Graduate Program in Agile, in partnership with the University of Massachusetts Amherst is a solid investment in your future.

About the Author

SimplilearnSimplilearn

Simplilearn is one of the world’s leading providers of online training for Digital Marketing, Cloud Computing, Project Management, Data Science, IT, Software Development, and many other emerging technologies.

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