Development Terms You Should Know

Below is a list of terms we use every day while working on projects at Agilx. These terms guide the development process and ensure our team and other stakeholders of the project are speaking the same language.

Sprint – A Sprint is a 2 week (10 business day) period where a specific set of features are developed. Each sprint contains a certain number of story points which contain tasks to be completed by our development team.

Story Point – A story point is a feature described at a high level that contains tasks that must be completed to deliver that feature (story point). Each sprint is filled with story points which are based on the priorities of the client. These priorities often shift throughout the term of the project which is why we practice agile development.

Task – A task is a specific actionable item performed by a developer. Each task has recorded hours which allows us to report on and estimate how long a feature will take to build.

Milestone – A milestone is a specific business goal to be met within the timeline of a project. Setting Milestones gives the project focus and direction allowing Agilx to consistently deliver usable features to the client through the term of the project.

Wireframes – A wireframe is an initial planning tool. We often use wireframes to communicate UI aspects including functional components of an application to a client before coding begins.

Specification Document – A specifications document is a blue print for the application to be developed. The specification document clearly identifies features and the overall scope of the project.

Estimation & Process of Estimating – We are always asked 2 things no matter what project we work on – “How long will that take?” & “How much will that cost.” For us to give a accurate answer to those questions we first collaborate with the team to flush out any unknowns. We then discuss what technologies will be used and how the feature request will function, be tested and deployed. At that point we have a good idea of how many development hours it will take to complete the request and the cost associated with it.

Discovery Phase – A discovery phase is need if the project specification either has insufficient level of detail or doesn’t exist, development process and milestones are not yet clear, documentation is unavailable or incomplete.

Discovery Process – Our approach to discovery is unique and very high touch. Discovery involves at least one meeting with all the stakeholders of the project and the Agilx development team. During this process we use a combination of white boarding, sticky notes and mockups to flush out unknowns, brainstorm and produce a statement of work which covers the scope of the project, cost, milestones & timeline. A result of the discovery phase is our clients and team have a clear vision and expectations of what is to be developed.

Agile Development – Agile development welcomes changing customer requirements throughout the development process and allows us to deliver useful software frequently instead of all at once at the end of the project.

Cloud Hosting – Your software is hosted is some of the most sophisticated data centers on the planet with redundancy across multiple servers. Instead of purchasing a server and paying to upgrade RAM, Disk Space and processing power, cloud hosting allows you to scale a server with the click of a button as your application grows. You pay a simple monthly fee for the server instance you use and Agilx will manage it for you or you can manage it yourself.

MVP – A “Minimum Viable Product” has only the core features that provide value to a customer allowing our clients to quickly test a hypothesis and get rapid feedback. 

Scope Creep – Scope creep occurs when a static specification isn’t followed and additional features creep into the initial project specifications extending time, cost and delivery of the project. To avoid scope creep it is very beneficial to put emphasis on the discovery and planning phase. 

Time & Materials – Time & Materials is a term used when a project budget is formed on the basis of man hours worked and can be flexibly adjusted to the changing needs for time and resources.

Fixed Bid – A Fixed Bid project is a project where specifications, requirements, development process, deadline and resources are clearly defined allowing the project to work from a fixed budget and deadline.