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Agile vs DevOps: What’s The Difference?

23 Mar 2023
The entire approach of developing software and related products underwent a seamless transformation when agile methodology gained immense popularity in the 2000s. However, it was only a matter of time before major neglect surfaced.  Within a couple of years of becoming an industry benchmark, it was uncovered that the operations team’s needs and approaches, who […]
agile vs devops

The entire approach of developing software and related products underwent a seamless transformation when agile methodology gained immense popularity in the 2000s. However, it was only a matter of time before major neglect surfaced. 

Within a couple of years of becoming an industry benchmark, it was uncovered that the operations team’s needs and approaches, who installed and maintained software products, were excluded from the transformation. 

This resulted in the introduction of DevOps – an approach that integrated development and operations teams to build coordination between them. This led to confusion about whether DevOps replaced agile or whether they are both the same. Essentially, both agile and DevOps come with differences and similarities. 

To be precise, the key difference between agile and DevOps is that Agile is a development and distribution methodology. In contrast, DevOps continually explains how to deploy software using contemporary tools and automation procedures.

If DevOps seems like a good career path to you, enrolling in a DevOps & Cloud Engineering course will be the right way to begin the journey. But before delving into agile vs DevOps, learn what they are. Read this article difference between agile and DevOps in-depth

Table of Contents 

What Is The Agile Method?

The agile methodology involves the constant implementation and iteration/repetition of development and testing in the SDLC procedure. In contrast to the waterfall model, testing and development operations run simultaneously with the agile method. 

The agile software development methodology prioritizes and focuses on progressive, evolutionary, and adaptive development. It disassembles the software product into manageable components before reassembling them for the last successful testing. 

When it comes to an Agile example, there are numerous approaches to implementing this method, including Scrum, XP, Kanban, etc. The four basic principles of software development using agile methods are:

  1. Interaction between individuals and teams over the tools and processes.
  2. Fully operational software is preferred over thorough documentation.
  3. Collaborative customer input over contract negotiations.
  4. Adapting to change as opposed to sticking to a plan.

What Is DevOps?

DevOps is a cutting-edge software development methodology that allows a group of professionals to develop, debug, test, and deploy software products quickly and consistently. 

It implements agile principles and techniques, like enhanced communication between the operations and development teams and elevated automation. Development, testing, and deployment are crucial for both agile and DevOps. 

Nevertheless, when it comes to agile vs DevOps, conventional agile methodologies neglect operations, which is the core component of DevOps. 

devops tools
Each DevOps example – such as bug removal or network cycling — aims to bridge the gap between operations, who manage the software in production, and developers, who create application software, further to construct and manage the supporting infrastructure.

Agile vs DevOps

Below is a list of parameters based on which anyone can learn every key difference between agile and DevOps. Let’s start. 

  • Agile vs DevOps : Skill Set

Agile  DevOps
When it comes to Agile vs DevOps, agile development strongly emphasizes equipping all team members with a wide range of comparable and equivalent skills. The operations and development teams’ DevOps skill sets are divided and distributed through DevOps.
  • Agile vs DevOps : Implementation

Agile  DevOps
Regarding agile vs DevOps, agile methodologies can be used in various tactical contexts, including flash, safe, and scrum. DevOps lacks a widely acknowledged structure because its main objective strongly emphasizes cooperation.
  • Agile vs DevOps : Duration

Agile DevOps
“Sprints” are the management units used in agile projects. Every sprint takes substantially less time than just a month. However, the latter is a better solution when comparing Agile vs DevOps. With significant releases, DevOps aims towards deadlines and benchmarks. Code delivery to production should ideally occur every few hours or regularly.
  • Agile vs DevOps : Target Areas

Agile DevOps
Software development is the core and basic target area for agile methodologies.  DevOps offer fast delivery and ensure end-to-end business solutions.
  • Agile vs DevOps : Feedback

Agile DevOps
When comparing a file vs. Devops,  operates and focuses on non-functional and functional readiness.  The DevOps emphasizes more on business and operational readiness.
  • Agile vs DevOps : Importance

Agile DevOps
  • Agile projects employ "sprints" as the management programs. 
  • Each sprint requires a lot less time than a single month. 
  • DevOps, as opposed to Agile, is the best approach. 
  • Agile gives importance to only development
  • DevOps strives to meet standards and timelines for key releases. 
  • Typically, code must be delivered to production every several hours or on a continuous basis.
  • When comparing agile vs DevOps, DevOps gives importance to development, testing, and deployment.
  • Agile vs DevOps : Quality

Agile DevOps
  • Improved software suites with the appropriate specifications are produced through agile. 
  • It is easily adaptable to changes that are made on schedule, over the course of the project.
  • DevOps results in enhanced quality production due to proactive bug eradication and standardization. 
  • To uphold quality benchmarks, developers must adhere to best practices for programming and architecture.
  • Agile vs DevOps : Tools

Agile DevOps
  • A few popular agile tools are Kanboard, Bugzilla, and JIRA.
  • A few popular DevOps tools include AWS, OpenStack, Chef, and Puppet.

Agile Vs DevOps: Pros List

To understand the key difference between Agile and DevOps, lets read more about the Pros list of both:

Agile Pros:
The key advantages of the agile methodology include the following: 

  • Next Level Product Quality: Testing is a seamless component of project implementation in an agile approach, resulting in a higher-quality end product altogether.
  • Higher Customer Satisfaction: Customer retention is higher with the Agile model because the client is constantly a part of the decision-making phase.
  • Enhanced Project Predictability: More methods for risk identification, risk prediction, and project planning are available under the Agile methodology.

devops engineer skills
DevOps Pros:

The key advantages of the DevOps methodology are as follows: 

  • Faster Delivery: Increased agility and effectiveness in both planned and unplanned reactions to business needs are two advantages of DevOps for businesses.
  • Digital Transformation: Digitalization is affecting commercial operations throughout all sectors, and technology innovation is the force that is pushing this trend. These digital solutions aim to improve employees’ performance and customer engagement.
  • Streamlined & Optimized Procedures: Teams find a way to work more quickly by releasing tiny changes more frequently, spotting problems in almost real-time, and reacting by moving forward instead of using the blunder-resistant traditional waterfall technique.

Agile Vs DevOps: Cons List

To understand the key difference between Agile and DevOps, lets read more about the Cons list of both:

Agile Cons:

  • Lack of documentation
  • Less predictable 
  • The final product is released much later.

DevOps Cons: 

  • More complexity in projects
  • Higher cost 
  • Lack of valuable metrics

Agile Vs DevOps: How to Choose the Best One?

The needs and preferences of the organization play a key role in deciding which approach is best suited for their development processes. DevOps and Agile methodology aim to boost quality and increase software development efficiency. Thus, choosing one without comparing it with the other is pointless. 

While some teams have had great success with agile approaches, others have had difficulty achieving the advantages claimed by this strategy. This can happen for various factors, such as teams not appropriately understanding or applying agile techniques. 

It’s also possible that adding a DevOps strategy will help firms that face challenges with agile resolve the issues by filling the gaps and helping them achieve the success and growth they hoped for. So, know what your organization needs and choose accordingly. 


To sum up, the following are the primary difference between Agile and DevOps:

  • The Agile Methodology serves as the explanation of Agile, whereas DevOps lacks a well-agreed-upon definition.
  • Whereas Agile is an approach to developing software, DevOps describes a workplace culture.
  • Continuous delivery is the primary concern for Agile, but continuous deployment is the top objective for DevOps.
  • Agile prioritizes “the quantity of work not done,” but DevOps focuses on automating all manual operations.
  • DevOps professionals adopt an Agile approach, whereas Agile requires users to be self-organized and driven.

The continual deployment and distribution of software to the client is the shared objective of everyone with an Agile mentality who embraces a DevOps culture. Technology innovations centered on DevOps can indeed be effective when all parties adopt an Agile attitude.


How can organizations decide which approach is best suited for their development processes?

When it comes to Agile Vs DevOps, the better approach for the development processes will depend on the complexity of the organization’s project. For complex projects, it is best to follow the agile methodology.

Unlike simple projects, which only have one stage, complicated projects might have multiple interrelated phases and multiple stages that each depend on one another. Agile methodologies are therefore preferred for such projects.

However, suppose the organization seeks faster software product development and easier deployment and maintenance of existing ones. In that case, the DevOps approach will best suit your organization’s development processes.

Can Agile and DevOps be used together in the same project or organization?

Both agile and DevOps approaches work concurrently since they complement one another. The DevOps-enabled constant automated integration and seamless deployment allow regular updates while fostering teamwork and collaboration between small-sized teams. 

Integration of agile and DevOps can streamline and accelerate the software development lifecycle. Plus, DevOps aids in the optimization of many procedures. 

Integrating DevOps and Agile methodologies enables businesses to produce powerful, dependable software effectively in a short time.

How can organizations measure the success of their Agile and DevOps initiatives?

Business goals must be precise, measurable, attainable, reasonable, and time-based to get measured effectively. They also need to be well-aligned with the methodologies being implemented. This necessitates a harmonious workplace environment of humans, methods, and technology to accomplish such objectives.

Measuring the Success of DevOps Initiatives: 

The subsequent four are crucial metrics that any DevOps team must track, even though many others may be applied to gauge DevOps progress and performance. Here are the metrics: 

  • Mean time to recovery 
  • Change failure rate 
  • Deployment frequency
  • Lead time for changes 

Measuring the Success of Agile Initiatives: 

To measure the success of the agile initiatives, use these metrics: 

  • On-time delivery
  • Customer/User satisfaction
  • Product Quality 
  • Project visibility and more

How do Agile and DevOps teams collaborate and communicate with each other?

The values of customer satisfaction, continual improvement, feedback, and collaboration are shared by both Agile and DevOps. 

The agile methodology is an iterative technique with continuous delivery and quick development cycles. DevOps encourages and promotes constant delivery, deployment and integration. 

When it comes to Agile Vs DevOps, many organizations think that the only way both can collaborate more efficiently is when they improve the interfaces, like incident backlogs or service-level agreements, between operations and development teams.

How does DevOps address the limitations of Agile methodologies?

When discussing Agile Vs DevOps, there’s no doubt that DevOps better addresses the limitations of agile approaches. Despite everything Agile can do for you, not everyone will embrace it. So, it’s critical to be informed of the drawbacks of the Agile technique. 

Some of the major limitations of agile include limited documentation, poor resource planning, fragmented output, and difficult measurement. DevOps addresses all these limitations and contributes to enhanced automation quality while removing bugs early.

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