Welcome!

AJAX & REA Authors: Pat Romanski, Plutora Blog, Elizabeth White, Sematext Blog, PagerDuty Blog

Related Topics: SOA & WOA, Java, XML, .NET, AJAX & REA, Web 2.0

SOA & WOA: Blog Feed Post

(Offshored-Distributed-Outsourced) Agile

What Is the Relationship Between Them?

  • Is off-shore agile a special case of distributed agile?
  • Can the term offshore agile and outsourced agile be used interchangeably?
  • If you have done distributed agile, then can you claim to understand off-shored agile and outsourced agile?
  • Similarly, if you have mastered off-shored agile you say with confidence that you understand distributed agile and outsourced agile?
  • Lastly, if you have done outsourced agile could you easily extend your learning to distributed agile and off-shore agile?

Agile 1.2That is a lot of questions!

And, I am sure you would have guessed that I think the answer to all these questions are NO.

Is off-shore agile a special case of distributed agile?

If you take the literary meaning of the words off-shore and distributed then it would appear that off-shore is indeed a special case of distributed. But, if go by the de facto understanding then off-shoring is definitely not a special case of distributed software development.

Off-shoring implies setting up a (software development) facility in a different country (India?) to take advantage of the cost arbitrage (practice of taking advantage of a price difference between two or more markets).

Distributed development implies spreading a complex piece of (software development) work across multiple location to take advantage of available expertise.

Off-shore Development = Driven by cost saving

Distributed Development = Driven by availability of expertise

Remember Malcolm Gladwell’s 10,000 hours rule which states that the key to success in any field is a matter of practicing for around 10,000 hours. That translates to about 5 years of regular full day work!

So, over a period of time off-shore facility gains expertise and cost arbitrage ceases to be the main reason for off-shoring. And then …

… in about 5 years time off-shore development becomes distributed development.

Is off-shoring same as outsourcing?

This is easy to answer!

Outsourcing implies giving the work to another party.

Off-shoring need not involve another party, it can be your own facility.

Similarly, outsourcing need not involve off-shoring. It can be done from:

  • Same location,
  • Same city,
  • Near shore facility … and off course
  • Off-shore facility

This is when you can visit the 6th principle behind the agile manifesto!

..the most efficient and effective method of conveying information to and within a development team is face-to-face conversation…

The four types of outsourcing primarily differs by how much time / cost is involved to setup a face-to-face meeting. In other words a trade-off is involved. On one side it is the 6th principle … and on the other side … you should be clear what it is.

That brings us to the 5th principle behind the agile manifesto.

…build projects around motivated individuals. Give them the environment and support they need, and trust them to get the job done…

This leads us to the key difference between in-sourced off-shoring and out-sourced off-shoring. When separate organizations are involved how do you build a trusting relationship? How long does take to build such a relationship?. How do you build a contract which both parties think as fare?

Therefore … what are the distinct characteristics of …

… Distributed Agile Development?

  • Splitting the problem and distributing the work
  • Coordinating and synchronizing iterations done across distributed locations
  • Ensuring smooth communication among the distributed locations

These challenges remain for off-shoring but there are others which go beyond.

… Off-shore Agile Development?

  • Setting up infrastructure
  • Knowledge transfer
  • Bridging the expertise gap

Both for in-sourced and outsourced off-shoring these challenges apply. But for outsourcing there are additional challenges.

… Outsourced Agile Development?

  • Preparing a win-win contract
  • Building trusting relationship

Points to Ponder

  • Does this discussion apply only to agile software development or is it applicable for any software development?
  • How do you know if your tailored process remains to be agile?

Related Article

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Udayan Banerjee

Udayan Banerjee is CTO at NIIT Technologies Ltd, an IT industry veteran with more than 30 years' experience. He blogs at http://setandbma.wordpress.com.
The blog focuses on emerging technologies like cloud computing, mobile computing, social media aka web 2.0 etc. It also contains stuff about agile methodology and trends in architecture. It is a world view seen through the lens of a software service provider based out of Bangalore and serving clients across the world. The focus is mostly on...

  • Keep the hype out and project a realistic picture
  • Uncover trends not very apparent
  • Draw conclusion from real life experience
  • Point out fallacy & discrepancy when I see them
  • Talk about trends which I find interesting
Google

@CloudExpo Stories
"At Harbinger we do products as well as services. Our services are with helping companies move their products to the cloud operating systems. Some of the challenges we have seen as far as cloud adoption goes are in the cloud security space," noted Shrikant Pattathil, Executive Vice President at Harbinger Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at Cloud Expo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
After a couple of false starts, cloud-based desktop solutions are picking up steam, driven by trends such as BYOD and pervasive high-speed connectivity. In his session at 15th Cloud Expo, Seth Bostock, CEO of IndependenceIT, cut through the hype and the acronyms, and discussed the emergence of full-featured cloud workspaces that do for the desktop what cloud infrastructure did for the server. He also discussed VDI vs DaaS, implementation strategies and evaluation criteria.
Things are being built upon cloud foundations to transform organizations. This CEO Power Panel at 15th Cloud Expo, moderated by Roger Strukhoff, Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo conference chair, addressed the big issues involving these technologies and, more important, the results they will achieve. Rodney Rogers, chairman and CEO of Virtustream; Brendan O'Brien, co-founder of Aria Systems, Bart Copeland, president and CEO of ActiveState Software; Jim Cowie, chief scientist at Dyn; Dave Wagstaff, VP ...
“The year of the cloud – we have no idea when it's really happening but we think it's happening now. For those technology providers like Zentera that are helping enterprises move to the cloud - it's been fun to watch," noted Mike Loftus, VP Product Management and Marketing at Zentera Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at Cloud Expo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Bring the world's best IaaS to the world's best PaaS. In their session at 15th Cloud Expo, Animesh Singh, a Senior Cloud Architect and Strategist for IBM Cloud Labs, and Jason Anderson, a Cloud Architect for IBM Cloud Labs, shared their experiences running Cloud Foundry on OpenStack. They focused on how Cloud Foundry and OpenStack complement each other, how they technically integrate using cloud provider interface (CPI), how we could automate an OpenStack setup for Cloud Foundry deployments, an...
"Application monitoring and intelligence can smooth the path in a DevOps environment. In a DevOps environment you see constant change. If you are trying to monitor things in a constantly changing environment, you're going to spend a lot of your job fixing your monitoring," explained Todd Rader, Solutions Architect at AppDynamics, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
"Desktop as a Service is emerging as a very big trend. One of the big influencers of this – for Esri – is that we have a large user base that uses virtualization and they are looking at Desktop as a Service right now," explained John Meza, Product Engineer at Esri, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at Cloud Expo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
What do a firewall and a fortress have in common? They are no longer strong enough to protect the valuables housed inside. Like the walls of an old fortress, the cracks in the firewall are allowing the bad guys to slip in - unannounced and unnoticed. By the time these thieves get in, the damage is already done and the network is already compromised. Intellectual property is easily slipped out the back door leaving no trace of forced entry. If we want to reign in on these cybercriminals, it's hig...
Scott Jenson leads a project called The Physical Web within the Chrome team at Google. Project members are working to take the scalability and openness of the web and use it to talk to the exponentially exploding range of smart devices. Nearly every company today working on the IoT comes up with the same basic solution: use my server and you'll be fine. But if we really believe there will be trillions of these devices, that just can't scale. We need a system that is open a scalable and by using ...
The consumption economy is here and so are cloud applications and solutions that offer more than subscription and flat fee models and at the same time are available on a pure consumption model, which not only reduces IT spend but also lowers infrastructure costs, and offers ease of use and availability. In their session at 15th Cloud Expo, Ermanno Bonifazi, CEO & Founder of Solgenia, and Ian Khan, Global Strategic Positioning & Brand Manager at Solgenia, discussed this shifting dynamic with an ...
More and more file-based and machine generated data is being created every day causing exponential data and content growth, and creating a management nightmare for IT managers. What data centers really need to cope with this growth is a purpose-built tiered archive appliance that enables users to establish a single storage target for all of their applications - an appliance that will intelligently place and move data to and between storage tiers based on user-defined policies. In her session a...
Recurring revenue models are great for driving new business in every market sector, but they are complex and need to be effectively managed to maximize profits. How you handle the range of options for pricing, co-terming and proration will ultimately determine the fate of your bottom line. In his session at 15th Cloud Expo, Brendan O'Brien, Co-founder at Aria Systems, session examined: How time impacts recurring revenue How to effectively handle customer plan changes The range of pricing a...
SAP is delivering break-through innovation combined with fantastic user experience powered by the market-leading in-memory technology, SAP HANA. In his General Session at 15th Cloud Expo, Thorsten Leiduck, VP ISVs & Digital Commerce, SAP, discussed how SAP and partners provide cloud and hybrid cloud solutions as well as real-time Big Data offerings that help companies of all sizes and industries run better. SAP launched an application challenge to award the most innovative SAP HANA and SAP HANA...
Mobile, the cloud and data have upended traditional ways of doing business. Agile, continuous delivery and DevOps have stepped in to hasten product development, but one crucial process still hasn't caught up. Continuous content delivery is the missing limb of the success ecosystem. Currently workers spend countless, non-value add hours working in independent silos, hunting for versions, manually pushing documents between platforms, all while trying to manage the continuous update and flow of mul...
Over the last few years the healthcare ecosystem has revolved around innovations in Electronic Health Record (HER) based systems. This evolution has helped us achieve much desired interoperability. Now the focus is shifting to other equally important aspects - scalability and performance. While applying cloud computing environments to the EHR systems, a special consideration needs to be given to the cloud enablement of Veterans Health Information Systems and Technology Architecture (VistA), i.e....
Axios Systems on Tuesday announced it has selected CenturyLink Cloud as the hosting platform for Axios Systems’ IT Service Management (ITSM) solutions in Canada. CenturyLink, a global provider of communications and IT services, joins other leading technology providers across North America, Europe and APAC to help Axios’ international customers drive efficiencies and innovation across their service management provision. The arrangement with CenturyLink enables Axios to further strengthen its pres...
"SAP had made a big transition into the cloud as we believe it has significant value for our customers, drives innovation and is easy to consume. When you look at the SAP portfolio, SAP HANA is the underlying platform and it powers all of our platforms and all of our analytics," explained Thorsten Leiduck, VP ISVs & Digital Commerce at SAP, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 15th Cloud Expo, held Nov 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
The Industrial Internet revolution is now underway, enabled by connected machines and billions of devices that communicate and collaborate. The massive amounts of Big Data requiring real-time analysis is flooding legacy IT systems and giving way to cloud environments that can handle the unpredictable workloads. Yet many barriers remain until we can fully realize the opportunities and benefits from the convergence of machines and devices with Big Data and the cloud, including interoperability, ...
Today’s enterprise is being driven by disruptive competitive and human capital requirements to provide enterprise application access through not only desktops, but also mobile devices. To retrofit existing programs across all these devices using traditional programming methods is very costly and time consuming – often prohibitively so. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jesse Shiah, CEO, President, and Co-Founder of AgilePoint Inc., discussed how you can create applications that run on all mobile ...
The move in recent years to cloud computing services and architectures has added significant pace to the application development and deployment environment. When enterprise IT can spin up large computing instances in just minutes, developers can also design and deploy in small time frames that were unimaginable a few years ago. The consequent move toward lean, agile, and fast development leads to the need for the development and operations sides to work very closely together. Thus, DevOps become...