Waterfall – Agile Hybrid Methodology

In the year 2001, the agile method was first introduced. By a group of software industry leaders who met and coined the term – agile software development. A blanket term for a new methodology. The aim of this methodology was to fasten the process of Software development. The average estimated time between a validated business need and an actual application in production was about three years.

Before Agile, Software development life cycle (SDLC) followed a rigid process of gathering requirements. Designing the software, implementing the software, verifying functionality, and maintaining the software. Completed the phases in that order, without deviation. We know this methodology as Waterfall.

Waterfall - Process
A quick visual representation of the waterfall method

Agile proved as a boon for the software development industry. Soon it became so popular that it has nearly rendered the Waterfall model obsolete. The interactive process is the name of the process, at each stage, the same iterative cycle is done i.e. Discover, Design, Develop and Test.

Agile Process
Agile Sprint Process

Though the Agile approach has many advantages, it is not a “one size fits all” solution.
As a result, we often see businesses using a combination of Agile and traditional Waterfall methods. Combining the strengths of both waterfall and agile into one approach.

Agile -Waterfall Hybrid

The Agile-Waterfall Hybrid incorporates the best of both worlds.
You can know more about the pros and cons of Agile and Waterfall methodology in our previous blog.

Popularly practiced are the Hybrid methodology, Agile-Waterfall Hybrid method which Erick Bergmann and Andy Hamilton defined.
The custom Hybrid solutions help us keep some level of planning and structure. While aiming to reap the benefits of an iterative, flexible, collaborative approach.
The Agile-Waterfall hybrid allows the software design and development team to work within the Agile methodology. While business and product managers remain stick to the Waterfall approach.

To speed up the whole process, Plan with Waterfall, execute with Agile.

Cover these steps when using the Waterfall method:

  • Requirements collection
  • Planning & strategizing 
  • Budget Allocation

Do these steps when using an Agile method:

  • Design, 
  • Development 
  • Testing  in short sprints using Agile (Scrum)

The overall process looks like this:

Waterfall - Agile Hybrid Process


Depending on one methodology can be sometimes tough. The project leader needs to choose the methodology that best suits the project’s requirement, which in turn entails learning about the advantages and disadvantages of the different methods that can be chosen.

By combing the best practices of both methodologies & incorporating the right methodology the project goals can be met successfully.

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