Waterfall vs Agile Methodology

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We will see waterfall vs agile methodology in that definition, approach, Flexibility customer Involvement, delivery time, risk management, pros and cons. There are various aspects will fall under to cover the differences we will see it one one-by-one.

Waterfall vs Agile Methodology

Waaterfall and Agile Methodologies are 2 types of the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC). where in waterfall model is traditional model IT people are following but since Agile methodology is introduced most of the IT sectors Adapting Agile methodology over waterfall model.

Definition of Waterfall Model

The waterfall model is a sequential approach to project management in which each part of the project is finished before moving on to the next. It goes in a straight line, starting with gathering requirements, then design, development, testing, and then deployment. When a phase is over, it rarely comes back.

Definition of Agile Methodology

Agile methodology is an iterative and flexible approach to project management. Collaboration, flexibility, and ongoing improvement are highlighted. Agile projects are split into more manageable parts called “sprints,” during which crossfunctional teams collaborate to add new value.

Waterfall ModelAgile Methodology
ApproachIt takes a linear, sequential approach. There is little overlap between the phases of the project, and each one is finished before moving on to the next.It is n iterative and incremental approach. The project is broken up into smaller iterations (sprints), and each sprint delivers a working piece of software. Throughout the project, suggestions and changes are considered.
FlexibilityWhen it comes to accommodating changes in requirements, and this model is less flexible. Once a phase is finished, it is hard to go back and change the work that was done.It is very flexible and encourages changes and adaptations. Each iteration incorporates feedback from stakeholders, allowing for ongoing improvement and requirement modification.
Customer InvolvementIn this, customer involvement is typically restricted until the project’s final stages, when the product is delivered for testing or deployment.It places a strong emphasis on frequent and ongoing customer involvement. Customers and other stakeholders are involved in the project from start to finish, giving feedback and guiding development.
Delivery TimeIn this methodology, the final product is delivered at the end of the project, when all the phases are finished.this provides working software at the end of each iteration.
Risk ManagementIn this method, risks are mostly expected to deal with during the planning phase. Changes or problems that come up later in the project can be hard to deal with.Risk management is a key component of this method. Throughout each iteration, risks are continuously found, tracked, and reduced.
Team CollaborationThis method approach encourages separate teams or individuals to work on different parts of a project.It is very focused on working together as a team across different departments. Teams collaborate closely, which encourages communication, information sharing, and group decision-making.
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To understand above difference between Waterfall and Agile follow below chart.

Waterfall Agile
ApproachSequential, linearIterative, flexible
RequirementsFixed, known upfrontAdaptive, can change
ProgressPhases completed one after anotherIncremental iterations
Customer InvolvementLimited until final stagesContinuous involvement
FlexibilityLess flexible, limited scope for changesHighly flexible, encourages changes
Delivery TimeFinal product delivered at project completionFunctional increments delivered throughout
Risk ManagementAddressed during planning phaseAddressed continuously throughout
Team Collaborationindividual work, limited collaborationCross-functional teamwork, active collaboration

Waterfall vs Agile Methodology Pros and Cons

We have seen differences between both the SDLC methods. let’s checkout pros and cons of each model.



  • Clear and well-defined process.
  • Easier to plan and schedule.
  • Emphasizes thorough documentation.
  • Suitable for projects with stable and unchanging requirements.


  • Less adaptable to changes or evolving requirements.
  • Limited customer involvement until the end.
  • Difficult to make adjustments during development.
  • High risk of late-stage changes causing delays or cost overruns.



  • Highly flexible and adaptable to changes.
  • Encourages customer collaboration throughout the development process.
  • Faster feedback loops facilitate quicker problem resolution.
  • Allows for incremental and iterative development.


  • Requires active customer involvement and continuous communication.
  • Prioritization and time management can be challenging.
  • Lack of comprehensive documentation.
  • Potential for scope creep if not properly managed.

Final Words

In the end, Waterfall vs Agile Methodology both are good at their place. the choice between them depends on what the project is and what it needs. The Waterfall method is good for projects with clear and stable requirements because it uses a structured, step-by-step process and clear documentation. But its lack of flexibility and limited ability to adapt to changes may make it hard to meet new needs.

On the other hand, Agile, uses a more flexible and iterative approach that makes it easier to work with customers and meet their changing needs.

Also, Read:

Difference Between System Testing & Integration Testing

Difference Between White-box Testing & Black-box Testing

Open-Source vs. Commercial Testing Tools

Difference Between SDET and Quality Assurance


Avinash is the Founder of Software Testing Sapiens. He is a blogger and Software Tester who has been helping people to get thier Jobs over a years Now.

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