Agile Vs Waterfall: Difference Between Methodologies – A Simple Guide In 6 Points

Ajay Ohri

Introduction to Waterfall Methodology 

The waterfall model methodology (here, we will discuss the waterfall model vs agile model) is also known as the linear or sequential model. This is a sequential model, so the next step is completed only when its previous step is completed. 

Different software development phases can be divided into additional steps to compare waterfall methodology vs agile, including System Analysis and Design, Requirement Gathering, Implementation, Testing, Deployment, and Maintenance. All phases are executed sequentially in the given order. Here we are going to describe the agile vs waterfall concept clear to you. Here we will also discuss the following points:

  • Agile vs Waterfall Comparison Table
  • Agile vs Waterfall Pros and Cons

These points are discussed in the context of agile methodology vs waterfall model.

  1. Advantages or Pros of the Popular Waterfall Model
  2. Agile Methodology
  3. Advantages or Pros of Popular Agile Methodology
  4. Agile Methodology Limitation
  5. Difference Between Agile and Waterfall Model/Agile vs Waterfall or Waterfall model vs Agile Model Comparison Table
  6. Final Words to Compare Waterfall Method vs Agile
  • The waterfall is an easy-to-manage model that has specific deliverables and review processes due to its nature.
  • It can speed up the project delivery 
  • All processes and results are well documented.
  • The easy-to-adapt methods to shift the teams
  • This model is the best for small-sized projects for which it is relatively easy to understand the requirements.

Along with these requirements, there are some limitations as well of this model due to which sometimes waterfall model vs agile is often discussed, and they are listed below:

  • The model is not suitable for the large size of the projects.
  • If the requirement at the beginning is not exact, then this method does not prove to be effective.
  • If the developers have to change in the previous phase, then it may become difficult to go back to the previous stage.
  • The testing process only starts when the development step gets over, so the chances of getting bugs to become higher that too in the later stage become expensive to fix the bugs.

These are some of the advantages and limitations of the waterfall model. We study the waterfall vs agile model. Some of the organizations like to adopt agile methodologies. Let us know what the Agile method is to make the agile vs waterfall concept clear to you?

2) Agile Methodology

Agile methodology helps in the continuous iteration of the development and testing process. Here in this methodology, the development and testing activities are concurrent, unlike the Waterfall model. The agile model helps in managing communication between customers, developers, managers, and testers. Sometimes we have to study agile methodology vs waterfall cases.

  • The method is focused on the client process, so through the process, it can make sure that the client will remain involved continuously during the development process.
  • Agile development methodologies can assure software quality throughout its development phase.
  • The agile process entirely depends on incremental progress due to which the client and the team both can know and track the development process and reduce the risk. They know and compare agile vs waterfall comparison.
  • Agile teams are self-organized and self-motivated so they can provide better results to develop the project.

4) Agile Methodology Limitation

  • Agile methodology is not suitable for small projects.
  • If the project manager is not clear about the project step’s outcome, it can go off track.
  • The involvement of an expert is required to make critical project-related decisions.
  • The cost of Agile method implementation is quite more in comparison to other methodologies.

5) Difference Between Agile and Waterfall Model/Agile vs Waterfall or Waterfall model vs Agile Model Comparison Table

Both of these methodologies are used to develop software projects. Still, there are some differences as well, and we study agile methodology vs waterfall that make one choose one over another and make the agile vs waterfall concept clear to you. Let us see the differences:

Waterfall Method Vs Agile Table

S.No. Feature Agile Waterfall
1 Approach The incremental approach is followed. This is a sequential design process.
2 Flexibility Agile methodology is quite flexible. The waterfall model is a sequentially structured software development methodology and sometimes becomes quite rigid.
3 Subprojects Agile is a collection of many different projects. The development of the software is done as a single project
4 Project Break-down The project development life cycle is separated into a sprint in an agile process In this model, the complete process is divided into distinct phases
5 Project Flexibility Agile is a flexible method that can be used to make changes in the project development requirement even after the completion of the initial planning In the waterfall model, the software development process is divided into distinct phases
6 Plan Review Possibility The test plan is reviewed after each sprint The test plan is discussed during the test phase
7 Change in Requirements In the agile development process, the requirements keep on changing and refreshing The waterfall models have definite requirements for which the changes are not expected
8 Testing Concurrency In agile methodology, the testing is performed concurrently with application development Here in this methodology, the phase of “Testing” comes after the “Build” phase
9 Team Dedication Small and dedicated teams are usually offered with proper coordination and synchronization The coordination and synchronization of teams is very limited
10 Alteration in Project Requirement The project description can be altered at any time during the full development lifecycle of the process Detailed software development description is implemented by following the waterfall approach
11 Project Management An entire agile project is managed by an entire team so there is no need for the project manager The waterfall model follows the straightforward approach to managing the project and therefore project management is an imperative part of SDLC
12 Requirement Preparation Every day the requirement is prepared by the project owner and team to speed up the work during the full lifecycle of the project Business analyst prepares the requirement of the project before its initialization
13 Customer Requirement Fulfillment The  agile methodology takes software as a product that must satisfy the customer’s need and can be changed as per customer requirement The waterfall model does not take software as a product and focuses completely on project accomplishment.
14 Iterative/Sequential Model Agile methodology is iterative and incremental Waterfall methodology is linear and sequential
15 Project Scaling The project can be easily scaled due to its iterative approach Project scaling is difficult in waterfall methodology
16 Requirement of Formalized Document Formalized documentation is not necessary for the Agile method. A working prototype serves as the best tool for customer feedback and evaluation The waterfall model required formal documentation
17 Customer Interaction Frequent customer or client engagement and interaction is involved during the development lifecycle. The end-user or customer requirement is frozen at the initial step. The product is provided to the customer only when it is entirely built.

6) Final Words to Compare Waterfall Method vs Agile

Today most companies are using Agile methodology due to its benefits and know the waterfall methodology vs agile. Some organizations, especially those in the development of small projects, are using waterfall models. Here we have presented a detailed description and agile vs waterfall comparison table of the difference between both methodologies as agile vs waterfall.

Agile methods may be suitable for some cases, while other waterfalls may be the best ones. The agile vs waterfall pros and cons help in selecting the best one. Choose the one that suits your requirement exactly as you know the pros and cons of agile methodology vs waterfall model.


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