In today’s rapidly shifting business and technology environment, development teams struggle to keep up with the increasing assortment of new technologies, as well as rapidly changing scenarios and customer requirements.
Resulting from this fast moving landscape many development organizations transitioned from Waterfall methodologies to Agile. Agile presented numerous advantages for certain projects- where short iterations, a focus on full working products, and prioritizing requirements, were all much needed.
However despite the advantages of Agile, challenges still exist. Just because Agile gives teams the chance to adapt and correct in subsequent sprints, it is still something that should be avoided. Spending one iteration delivering something that may not accomplish stakeholder’s expectations is still expensive. In many cases this emerges because of communication gaps between the business stakeholder and the development team. It is here in particular that Behavior-Driven Development provides particular help.
BDD is an evolution to Agile approaches to software development that encourages teams to deliver software by emphasizing interaction between stakeholders. It takes into consideration both business and technical perspectives – and one of the key ways it achieves this is by writing test cases in a language that both technical individuals and non-programmers can understand. BDD clearly identifies a stakeholder, a business effect, and a business value in each user story. It also describes several scenarios, each with a precondition, trigger and expected outcome, all using a common, team-wide accepted language.
These steps help bridge the communication gaps between business and technical stakeholders, which has long been problematic for organizations. Business individuals often struggle to articulate what they need in language clearly understandable by the technology organization. Meanwhile those with a technical perspective often focus on how things work, rather than the business value of the requirement. BDD provides a concrete and clear approach for bridging this chasm. The impact is improved quality and further increased development speed.