The practice of delivering products continuously and frequently is very important to agile methods and that is almost a mantra among agile software developers. The Absence of Frequent Deliveries smell is detected when the development team does not deliver a new version of the software frequently. The occurrence of this smell may indicate that this practice has been jeopardized.
Agile Methods: All analyzed agile methods state that the software project deliveries should be frequent. XP proposes breaking the work in Small and Short Releases in order to guarantee regular and frequent deliveries. In Scrum, the work is broken in sprints which are timeboxed periods (approximately 15 to 30 days) where the development team produces a new executable version of the software. In Crystal methods, the development result product is also incremental and the deliveries interval depends on the length of the project: In Crystal Clear, the delivery intervals are periods of two to three months and in Crystal Orange, the increments can be extended to four months. In FDD, the iterations should take from a few days to a maximum of two weeks. DSDM’s philosophy states “best business value emerges when projects are aligned to clear business goals, deliver frequently and involve the collaboration of motivated and empowered people”. In ADS, the project is broken into units called Adaptive Development Cycles that typically last between four and eight weeks. OpenUP suggests breaking the work into iterations that take a few weeks..
Industry Perspective: All participants indicated - with different levels of relevance - that the detection of this smell is relevant for an Agility Assessment. No additional comment was given.
Identification Strategy: The occurrence of this smell could be detected by assessing the interval between two consecutive Iterations with deliverable.
Parameters: A Desirable Delivery Interval parameter could be used to specify the expected duration of the deliveries interval.