Why Too Much Documentation kills Agile

This blog will talk about the importance of efficiency especially in software development circles. It is essential to only complete tasks that add value in a software development area. The Agile manifesto states working software over documentation and this blog will go into detail about why that is the preferred approach within Agile.

Whats the problem with documentation?

Documentation as a tool to create value for the customer is not a bad thing however, the question that needs to be asked when documentation has be done is how is this helping the delivery of the project? If that question cannot be answered then, a revision of the documentation needs to be done. What Agile promotes is the ability to make decisions on development work via documentation that is enough for the developers to get started, not to provide the documentation that is enough to finish all the development. This allows the documentation to adapt to changes that are likely to happen in an Agile fast moving environment where there are so many things to consider and dependancies which could change the approach to be taken.

How to approach documentation

Documentation should be a collaborative piece of work. It should not be just one team members piece of work and it should be edited by others in the team in the draft stages. It is essential to understand documentation does not necessarily have to be a word document or detail in jira, it could be some technical code detail that needs to be considered. Good Agile will not create big upfront details that create alot of ambiguity but will focus on details that the team know for sure will need to happen.

To conclude, documentation reduction will continue to be on the agenda for the big organisations especially because the future for companies will constantly be how efficient can they be.

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