Agile Succeeds Three Times More Often Than Waterfall

Agile projects are successful three times more often than non-agile projects, according to the 2011 CHAOS report from the Standish Group. The report goes so far as to say, “The agile process is the universal remedy for software development project failure. Software applications developed through the agile process have three times the success rate of the traditional waterfall method and a much lower percentage of time and cost overruns.” (page 25) The Standish Group defines project success as on time, on budget, and with all planned features. They do not report how many projects are in their database but say that the results are from projects conducted from 2002 through 2010. The following graph shows the specific results reported. 2011 CHAOS Report Data

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About the Author

Mike Cohn is the founder of Mountain Goat Software, a process and project management consultancy that specializes in helping companies adopt and improve their use of Agile processes and techniques. He is the author of User Stories Applied for Agile Software Development, Agile Estimating and Planning, and Succeeding with Agile. Mike is a co-founder of the Agile Alliance. He is also a co-founder and current board member of the Scrum Alliance. He can be reached at info@mountaingoatsoftware.com or connect with Mike on Google+.