Software Development Methodologies Overview and Comparison of the Top 4 Options

Overview of Software Development Methodologies

Software development methodologies are like special plans that help teams make great software. They give them a step-by-step guide on how to make software in the best way possible. Scrum, Kanban, Waterfall, and Lean are four different methodologies that teams can use. Scrum likes to make small parts of the software at a time and gets feedback often. Kanban likes to organize the work visually so everyone knows what to do. Waterfall goes in a straight line, doing each step before moving to the next one. Lean wants to get rid of anything that doesn't help make the software better. It's important to know about these different methodologies so teams can pick the right one for their project and make the best software possible.

Agile Scrum Software Development Methodology

In Agile Scrum you divide the work into small parts called sprints. Each sprint has a specific time limit, and you work on a few things at a time. Everyone in the team has a special role. There's a person who knows what the software should be like, called the product owner. Then there's a person called the scrum master who helps the team work smoothly. And of course, there are the developers who actually make the software. Agile Scrum has special meetings every day to talk about what's going well and what needs help. They also have reviews to see how the software is coming along. Agile Scrum is great because it's flexible and can change when new ideas come up. It's perfect for making software that is exciting and have lots of cool features.

Agile Kanban Software Development Methodology

Agile Kanban is a software development method that focuses on visualizing workflow and optimizing efficiency. It originated from lean manufacturing principles and uses a visual board with different columns to represent work stages. Work items, like cards or sticky notes, move through the board as they progress. Kanban gives a clear and real-time view of the project's status, bottlenecks, and resource allocation. The method encourages a continuous flow of work, limiting the amount of work in progress (WIP), and promoting collaboration within the team. Kanban is advantageous due to its simplicity, adaptability to various projects, and emphasis on continuous improvement. It is especially useful for teams that value flexibility, deal with a steady stream of tasks, and prioritize maintaining a balanced workload.

Waterfall Software Development Methodology

Waterfall is a traditional way of making software that follows a step-by-step approach. It means doing each phase of the process in order, like gathering requirements, designing, developing, testing, and deploying the software, before moving on to the next phase. Waterfall is very structured and helps with planning in detail from the beginning. However, it doesn't allow for many changes or feedback during development. This method is good when the project requirements are clear and won't change much. It is often used in industries that have strict rules to follow or when the project has a fixed plan. Even though it's not very flexible, Waterfall is still useful when you need a predictable and controlled way of making software.

Lean Software Development Methodology

Lean is a way of making software that aims to be efficient and create value while avoiding unnecessary waste. It is based on the principles of lean manufacturing and focuses on improving things continuously and making customers happy. Lean tries to get rid of activities that don't add value and makes the workflow smoother. It encourages everyone in the team to find and fix problems that slow things down. By using Lean techniques like value stream mapping and Kaizen, teams can make their processes better and create software faster and with higher quality. Lean is really helpful in places where being efficient, reducing waste, and focusing on what customers need is really important. It also encourages everyone to keep learning and getting better, making it a good choice for organizations that want to keep improving how they make software.

Comparative analysis

When it comes to managing projects, Scrum and Kanban are more flexible software development methods and adaptable compared to Waterfall and Lean, which have more strict and organized processes. Scrum uses an iterative approach, which means doing things in small steps and getting feedback often. Kanban focuses on making the workflow as smooth as possible. Both Scrum and Kanban encourage communication and collaboration through regular meetings and visual boards, which help the team work together better. When things change or there are risks involved, Scrum and Kanban are really good at handling them because they can adjust and deal with them little by little. They are also scalable, which means they can work for big or small projects. In Scrum, Kanban, and Lean, making the customer happy is really important. They listen to what the customer wants and keep improving the software based on their feedback.


Selecting the right way to make software needs careful thinking about many things, and choosing the right software development method is the first step. You have to understand what the project needs and what makes it special. If the project changes a lot and needs feedback often, Scrum or Kanban might be better than Waterfall. Second, you have to think about what the team is good at. Different ways of making software need different skills, so it's important to match the team's strengths with what the method needs. Some ways of making software fit better with certain organizations, while others might have to follow special rules. Lastly, you have to think about the project's specific needs, like how much time and money there is, and what the people who care about the project expect. By thinking about all these things, you can pick the best way to make software and make sure the project goes well.