What is Lean Software Development (LSD)?

Lean Software Development and IT Enabled Services

August 18, 2022 15:51 PM

Lean software development

Lean Software Development (LSD) is an agile methodology that minimizes development time and resources, bypasses trash, and delivers only what the product needs. The Lean approach is often referred to as the Minimum Viable Product (MVP) approach, in which a team delivers the bare-minimum version of their product to the need. The team collects feedback from customers on what they like, dislike, and like to see added, and then iterates relying on this feedback.

What is Lean software development?

Lean software development is a vision that highlights optimizing efficiency and minimizing destruction in the software development process. This method has its origins in the Lean manufacturing movement of the 1980s. However, it is now considered an essential part of the Agile software development methodology.

History of Lean Software Development (LSD)

LSD emanates its philosophy from the manufacturing industry, which pioneered the lean development approach to optimize display and assembly lines to reduce waste and maximize customer value. Indeed, it was originally known as the Toyota Production System, an automaker Toyota developed in the mid-twentieth century to facilitate its automobile production and stop wastage of time and resources.

Other manufacturing companies in different industries ultimately adopted this method, which was modified to Lean. In 2003, with the release of the now-famous book Lean Software Development, the concept was used in software development for the first time.

7 Lean Software Development Principles

The principles of the lean development approach can be applied to any IT environment to enhance programming techniques. The practice is founded on seven fundamental principles:

  • Waste Elimination
  • Amplifying Learning
  • Late Decision Making
  • Fast Delivery
  • Team Empowerment
  • Built-in Integrity
  • View Applications as a Whole

Waste is defined as everything that can lessen code quality, improve development time and effort, or drop provided company value. It could be in the state of redundant code or functionality, programming holds, unclear needs, or inadequate testing. Lean development concentrates on releasing these restrictions, mastering basic techniques, and developing an understanding of the user’s true requirements.

Additionally, by delaying judgments until the last minute, the price of change stays significantly down. Iterative development is used to create new applications or updates rapidly. Software is developed with integrity to guarantee that the architecture and system elements work together. Organizations adopt lean development practices to provide continual progress due to the quick execution of modifications.

Waste Elimination

Project managers have regular sessions to discover and lower waste, such as redundant code, function delays, inadequate communication, quality problems, data duplication, and more jobs in the log than completed. This enables team members to recognize flaws and recommend adjustments for the following turn.

Improve Education

Learning is enhanced through extensive code review and cross-team meetings. Additionally, paired programming provides that a single engineer does not collect detailed knowledge when writing a certain piece of code.

Delay Commitments

In traditional project management, this often happens when you create an application and find that it is completely unsuitable for the market. The LSD approach predicts this danger and allows modification by deferring irreversible judgments until all experimentations are completed. This process always flexibly creates software, authorizing the incorporation of new learning and the ability of engineers to make modifications.

Fast Delivery

Yet, long-term planning was considered essential to corporate victory. Still, it has been shown that engineers spend extreme time creating sophisticated systems with unwanted elements over time. Thus, they created an MVP method, which entailed rapidly growing products with limited functionality and launching them to market to gauge reaction. This approach enables them to enhance the product based on user feedback.

Team Empowerment

LSD is more concerned with licensing team members than with defeating them. Establishing a collaborative environment supports a great balance when faced with tight deadlines and an immense workload. This technique evolves required when new members enter an established team.

Built-in Integrity

LSD is all about underestimating waste while keeping a priority on quality. Designers frequently use test-driven programming to validate their code before reporting it. Additionally, the quality can be improved by obtaining frequent input from team members and project managers.

View Applications as a Whole

Lean’s approach allows managers to break down an issue into its constituent elements to optimize the group’s workflow, foster team togetherness, and instill a feeling of shared responsibility, all of which result in improved team performance.

The Benefits and Drawbacks of Lean Software Development
LSD’s benefits are the following:
  • A streamlined methodology allows the delivery of superb functionality in less time.
  • Eliminates superfluous activity and, as a consequence, expenditures can be decreased.
  • Equips the development team with decision-making authority, which can help boost morale.
LSD’s drawbacks are the following:
  • It is positively dependent on the team participating, determining its scalability compared to other frameworks.
  • Relying on thorough documentation, a lack thereof may result in development mistakes.
  • What is the distinction between Lean and Agile development?
    Agile and lean concepts have a lot in common. When professionals compare Lean and Agile, they often highlight their commonalities rather than their distinctions. Lean and Agile coexist in such a way that it’s unattainable to tell the two apart. They are occasionally referred to in conjunction as Lean-Agile. The last three Lean principles explain some similarities between the Lean and Agile methodologies. In both cases, the product development team puts the pace and is finally accountable for the product’s delivery. Agile teams do this through the use of the sprint revolution. And Lean’s philosophy of “optimizing the whole” is similar to the Agile retrospective, in which team fellows convene following the completion of a project to study accomplishments and problems. There are a few little distinctions between the two forms. Lean is concerned with enhancing methods, whereas Agile is concerned with enhancing products. Agile practices strive to create products that meet customer desires and anticipations, and Lean is one technique for accomplishing this objective.

    Lean is frequently included in meetings of Agile frameworks alongside Scrum and Kanban. The Agile methods are explained in detail in the Agile Manifesto, including models and principles that guide Agile frameworks.

    What are the problems inherent in lean development?

    These are a few of the problems associated with lean software development practices:

    Prerequisites for team training

    When a team is unable to cooperate and communicate effectively, development efforts are harmed. Teams and individual team members must be trained to take responsibility for one another’s position and adapt to altering initiatives. Additionally, they must be able to coordinate their work and swap roles as preferences shift.

    Metrics that are missing

    A regular Lean pitfall is counting the incorrect software metrics or not counting at all. Because one of Lean software engineering’s immediate purposes is to clear waste, teams must be able to recognize and quantify waste.

    There are no limits

    In Lean, software needs specifications to adapt in reply to user feedback. Excessive sophistication and evolution make deploying a suitable piece of software complex.


    Suboptimization happens when only a part of the value creek of a manufacturing system is optimized. This occurs when a problem is divided into parts, and each part is solved independently without regard for the influence of other components or the whole system.

    Should You Employ Lean Software Development Techniques?

    Multiple companies have found that the LSD method is a good practice for software development. It simplifies the operation and causes the team to ruthlessly stop any activity that does not straight influence the outcome. However, for this process to be successful, an organization must have an excellent development team and implied trust in that team.

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Contact US!

India india

Plot No- 309-310, Phase IV, Udyog Vihar, Sector 18, Gurugram, Haryana 122022

+91 8920947884


1968 S. Coast Hwy, Laguna Beach, CA 92651, United States

+1 9176282062

Singapore singapore

10 Anson Road, #33-01, International Plaza, Singapore, Singapore 079903

+ 6590163053