Agile vs Traditional Project Management: What’s the Difference?

Agile vs Traditional

Did you know that 85% of companies either have or plan to adopt an agile project methodology? Are you concerned you’ll fall behind the competition if you don’t switch to agile as well? 

You may be wondering, “What is agile project management?”

Don’t worry if you’re not sure what agile is or if you should use it compared to more traditional methods. This article will walk you through the different types of project management for your business.

Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about agile and the difference between agile vs traditional project management. 

What Is an Agile Project? 

An agile project is delivered in short, iterative sprints, rather than waiting for completion. An agile project is built around short sprints and smaller releases of the product. The agile environment fosters collaboration, empowerment, and flexibility within your team 

In an agile project, your team will work in shorter and faster sprints to deliver the final project in smaller, incremental steps. After each incremental delivery, you’ll ask for feedback. You’ll then adapt the product based on feedback from the client and end-user.

Agile Project Management

Agile project management was first developed in the software and IT world. Today, it transcends to teams across industries and around the globe. Agile is an adaptive and responsive methodology for managing projects.

In agile, your team will focus on providing early value to your customer and listening to your customer’s voice around what you deliver. Agile project management simplifies how you complete your project.

You do this by focusing on short sprints with smaller deliverables. Agile also empowers your team to optimize your work processes so you can be more responsive to change. This allows you to adapt quickly and provide value to your end-user. 

Traditional Project Management 

In a traditional project, you work from pre-planned, mapped-out steps. These steps are determined before you begin the project and follow a linear path. Finally, you build it to completion, then test it before delivering it to the customer. 

This process can take years to deliver a final project. Meanwhile, if your customers’ needs or desires change in that time, you are left with a product nobody wants. This linear approach happens in a predictable sequence and doesn’t leave room for change. 

The Difference Between Agile vs Traditional Project Management

Each of these methods for project management has its own pros and cons. The traditional method is great if you’re working in a predictable and systematized process, such as building cars or cooking hamburgers at a fast-food restaurant. Many industries have created successful enterprises with this linear and methodical approach. 

However, today’s business environment changes rapidly. And the agile method is ideal for many teams who want to stay competitive in their industry. Agile is ideal for businesses that need rapid deployment and faster turnaround in a flexible manner.

This is why the agile methodology remains popular and has moved beyond the software industry. Today’s project managers need to know how and when to use each PM method.

As a PM, you will benefit from learning how to correctly implement the agile framework or renewing SAFe certification to stay competitive and up to date as a project manager.   

Make the Best Choice for Your Next Project

Now that you know the difference between agile vs traditional project management, you can make the best choice for your situation. Remember, every team and every project is different and will require different project planning.

However, in today’s busy world agile is fast becoming the method of choice for companies everywhere. For more great information on this and other topics, check out the rest of our blog. 


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