Berlin-based IT experts are developing software for all VW Group brands (Photo: VW)

Volkswagen Group’s IT department is further developing its expertise in digital customer offerings.

The world’s biggest car group has doubled the staff of its Digital Lab in Berlin since the facility opened in October 2016. It now has 70 IT experts at the lab, which is part of a global network of competence centers VW is using to develop digital new-mobility services.

In Berlin, developers are working on software for digital customer services around the connected car. The experts also are developing platforms that can be used across the VW Group’s 12 automotive brands.

Teams deploy a so-called “extreme programming” approach, which is part of the agile working methods increasingly used throughout the auto industry. The extreme software development method uses the principle of evolution. Software isn’t developed all the way through, but pieces of the project are completed and tested step-by-step before the entire software project is completed.

“Working in the Digital Lab, an international team is developing tailor-made software for various digital applications across all brands,” VW Group CIO Martin Hofmann said in a statement.

Hofmann said the agile software development approach is increasingly used in VW Group’s IT operations.

“We are connecting IT expertise with agile software development,” he said. “That’s a recipe for success.”