we were confident that the combination of cprime’s agile expertise, and tcgen’s expertise in hardware product development, would enable us to answer these questions. kevin thompson (cprime), john carter, and scott elliott (tcgen) began meeting in late 2013 to develop a questionnaire about the use of agile practices in the development of electronic hardware such as networking devices, flash memory, semiconductor manufacturing and test equipment, and so forth. it is probably not surprising that hardware projects generally cannot work in this mode, as the product is not usable in any meaningful fashion until its design is complete. for hardware products, the flow of deliverables generally does not produce a steady flow of usable features over time, and the product features become usable late in the development cycle.
an example of the overall flow of development, for hardware product that contains a software component, is illustrated in the figure: the standard scrum practices apply throughout. the product is complete at the end of the release cycle, which means that the software is ready for production, and the design of the physical hardware is ready for manufacturing. hardware and software development both requires some design work, but the hardware work has both a higher cost of change, and less flexibility (due to the available pool of components), and so more of the design work is done up front, relative to the software-design work. while the day-to-day experience of software development is very similar from one sprint to the next, this is not the case for hardware development. cprime, an alten group company, is a us based, full service consultancy that helps companies deliver extraordinary through consulting, managed services and custom solutions for thousands of software teams, including more than half of the fortune 100. cprime is a leader in agile / scrum transformation services, a large agile training company in the united states, an atlassian platinum solution/enterprise partner + atlassian verified vendor, a gold safe partner and a well established devops solution provider
however, agile’s principles on their own miss the mark in terms of a complete solution for hardware product development. so let’s look at agile and how hardware development is different than software development. the rapid growth of agile development is understandable because there are huge financial and cultural improvements realized by implementing agile in software development. just as lean manufacturing has some commonalities with lean product development, agile software development has some commonalities with lean hardware product development. in many cases, a hardware team striving to be more agile is moving in the right direction — agile hardware development. however, just as there are critical differences between lean manufacturing and lean product development, there are critical differences between lean software development and lean hardware development.
it is time we saw the differences clearly and built our software and development systems to operate leanly under these different conditions. driving down the length of the procure steps is a key initiative in lean npd today, but we are not, nor will we be anytime soon, anywhere close to procuring parts and building assemblies in the few minutes it takes to compile software. it isn’t difficult or expensive to give everyone full access to the latest and greatest version of the software for them to test. however, in hardware development, it costs a lot to give everyone who needs it access to the latest and greatest hardware, and it takes longer to deliver those units. there are other additional skills needed in hardware development such as the research scientists, supply chain, manufacturing, receiving/inspection, and field service not typically involved in a software project. download the applying agile to hardware product development ebook (pdf).
– chief scientist, cprime. can an agile process be used for hardware development? would it bring to hardware the agile manifesto, first developed in 2001, has revolutionized software development. the principles, tools, and the research conducted for this paper indicates that a scrum process is quite appropriate for hardware development. thus this paper describes a practical agile process for agile hardware development, which is almost identical to the scrum process as it is commonly used for developing software., agile methodology, agile methodology, 11 lessons learned from agile hardware development, hardware development life cycle, hardware development strategy.
agile hardware with embedded software development. cristian ureche. cristian holds a standard scrum methodology can agile methodology, in all its forms, was conceived for the purpose of developing good software; however, developers have begun thinking outside the box and applying agile methodology in hardware development processes. the most common process framework that applies agile methodologies is known as scrum. customers into the development process and work with r&d teams to stay flexible as we learned, but we didn’t always, agile development, jira hardware development
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