Why and How You Should Use Feature-Driven Development


The first level of decomposition is into general subject areas. Each of these areas then needs to be decomposed further into small chunks of functionality – features – that provide value to the customer. The features should be formulated at a level that allows developers to build them – ideally user stories. There are multiple advantages of using feature driven development like clear project management, minimizing complexity, and building better products. Jeff De Luca and Peter Coad are credited with developing the concept of FDD as they worked on a banking project in Singapore in 1997.

Feature-driven development is ideal for projects that have large development teams, follow pre-defined standards and require quick releases. Inversely, this methodology is not well-suited for projects that are small and highly dependent on the skill sets of specific lead developers. Her experience in diverse B2B and B2C industries continue to drive her interest in the SaaS customer journey. Rachaelle holds a BA in Communication Studies from the University of Florida. After the feature list is completed, the next step is to produce the development plan and assign ownership of features as classes to programmers.

The Benefits of using feature-driven development

The development manager leads and mentors the development team and oversees the day-to-day programming activities. Kanban – Kanban boards can provide a clear picture of the status of the development of features by an FDD team, especially when broken down into epics and user stories. If one of the key deliverables produced by the organization is software, https://globalcloudteam.com/ then developing a strong capability for software development can be achieved by adopting a method such as FDD. Individual class ownership – Unlike paired programming, FDD emphasizes ownership of the code by the individuals that produce it. However, I don’t see why paired programming – and shared ownership of the code – cannot be done in FDD, if desired.

what is feature-driven development

The nature of this methodology depends upon a stress period of two weeks. Like theScrummethod, FDD demands the client, also called the owner of the project, to be present during the first design conference and iteration retrospectives. Individual ownership means that different pieces of work, or a piece of code, are assigned to an owner. He or what is feature-driven development she is responsible for the execution, and needs to guarantee the quality and the performances. As with all Agile methods, the first step in the Feature Driven Development process is to obtain a good overview of the content and context of the project. FDD combines a few of the project sector’s recognised best practices into a coherent whole.


Think of all you’d need to do to have a complete product or software. FDD in Agile aims at delivering features efficiently and regularly. You build features incrementally until you have complete, working software. The framework is customer-centric and blends in a number of industry best practices. It promotes excellent status reporting, making it easy to keep tabs on progress and results.

  • You build features incrementally until you have complete, working software.
  • FDD is designed to grow as your company and your project grows, and it works well if your product requires long-term, ongoing development.
  • Teams should use the overall model to identify which features will be required.
  • The chief programmer determines which features will be designed and built in a two-week iteration.
  • It is important that during this inspection defects are identified, which otherwise would have surfaced much later.
  • The third phase consists of the managing of all functions, and the way they are implemented.

There have been several implementations of FDD since its successful use on the Singapore project. Feature-Driven Development is an agile framework that organizes development around features or specific product experiences as the unit of work. This iterative and incremental software development approach allows teams to produce faster value to customers through the development of small projects, functionality, or features.

Things About Feature Driven Development (FDD) Agile Methodology

Reduction in risks is observed as whole model and design is build in smaller segments. IT strategist Jeff de Luca originally devised the FDD concept in 1997 to organize a project for a bank in Singapore. The 15-month Agile project included 50 team members, and its success led to widespread adoption of the FDD model. Project Resource Planning Plan and allocate resources for timely delivery. Kanban Boards Instantly view project progress and create customized workflows.

what is feature-driven development

The team needs to determine how it will configuration manage its code to maintain a manageable process. Agile practice, teams should design concurrently and collaboratively. Project Management Plan Agile projects, track deadlines, and deliver results.


The activities all contain sub-activities that corresponding to sub-activities in the FDD process description. These concepts originate from the activities depicted in the left side of the diagram. Build by feature – Following the inspection and finalization of feature details in the previous stage, the team now executes all the items needed to support the design. A prototype may be created for testing and approval before being added to the main build for shipping. Build a features list – Working with the information you’ve gathered and your overall model, list out required features.

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If changes are necessary, it is key that the owners of the classes work together. You can divide up the models by team, functional area, or sub-system. The modes will be used to guide and direct the next phase – building the feature lists. FDD combines elements of the Unified Process and Agile software development, and is geared towards large-scale projects.

Develop Overall Model

What is delta testing and how are tech leaders using it to deliver customer insights throughout agile development? Since FDD is an agile technique, teams should design parallel and collaboratively. Feature-driven development may be appropriate for your project if you work for a significant firm or work on a large-scale software project. However, this technique places a heavy emphasis on chief developers. Isn’t Test Driven Development just a “programming method”, which you could use in scrum or any other agile framework. The first process, developing the overall model makes us have a deep understanding of the scope and the context of the project.

what is feature-driven development

Features are developed using short Iterative cycles, and each feature must go through a series of defined steps before it can be considered complete. Once all the features on the list have been developed and tested, the software is now ready to be released. Feature-driven development helps to ensure that each feature is fully tested, quality-checked, and delivered within the deadlines set by the team.

Final Thoughts on Feature-Driven Development

Wrike Blog Latest news and best practices on project management. Bob Stanke is a marketing technology professional with over 20 years of experience designing, developing, and delivering effective growth marketing strategies. Enforcing project visibility with frequent, accurate progress reports during all steps. Assigning features to a single owner to ensure consistency and code integrity. Breaking down complex features into smaller functions and subsets.



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