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Scrum The leading project methodology

Scrum The leading project methodology

Scrum is an framework for managing work with an emphasis on agile software development. It is designed for teams where the team break their work into iterations, called sprints which are ideally between 2 to 4 weeks long. Scrum is a framework that values sustainability and open dialogue on what can and cannot be reasonably accomplished in iteration for overall delivery

Scrum is known for the slogan “fail fast.”. Failure is okay as long as you’re learning from it, and acting fast on it and hence the term thereby encouraging the working of the project in fast feedback loop.

In a nutshell, here’s the Scrum framework in its simplest form. To start, the product owner has a prioritized backlog of work for the team to do. Every two weeks or so, the team looks at the backlog and decides what they can accomplish in the next two weeks. The team develops and tests their solution to the backlog items until they’re done and ready for use. At the end of the two weeks, the team demonstrates their accomplishments to the product owner and stakeholders. Finally, they reflect on how things went during the two weeks, and they decide what they can do to improve their work practices. That’s it. The short time frame and the focus on a completed product at the end forces the team to fail fast. Or, more appropriately, learn fast

The Scrum Team

The team comprises of following key roles : Product Owner, the Scrum master, developers

Product owner

The product owner represents the product’s stakeholders and the voice of the customer; and is accountable for ensuring that the team delivers value to the business. The product owner defines the product in customer-centric terms (typically user stories), adds them to the product backlog, and prioritizes them based on importance and dependencies.[19]Scrum teams should have one product owner. This role should not be combined with that of the scrum master. The product owner should focus on the business side of product development and spend the majority of their time liaising with stakeholders and should not dictate how the team reaches a technical solution.

Scrum Master

The Scrum Master is the second key role of the team. Nope it’s not just the same as Project Manager but much more. The Scrum Master is the facilitator who keeps the team within the boundaries of Scrum and ensures to balance the demands of the Product owner against the needs of the team. It’s the scrum master role to remove any road blocks being faced during the development. The scrum master is the person accountable for delivery against the delivery and also holds the team accountable for their commitments to the Product Owner. It is the Scrum master responsibility to focus on how the team accomplishes the work. The scrum master needs to maintain trends and progress showcase to let the team know they are on correct path

Developers

The development team is responsible for delivering potentially ready product increments every sprint (the sprint goal). In nutshell all technical members required in making the product such as design, development, testing, are all together are know as developers.

Common Guidelines for Scrum team

• Scrum is all about daily collaboration and communication. Co-locating team members in the same room, aisle or space to make that collaboration more effective.
• Since that is not possible with distributed offices and resources in today’s digital age you need to find ways to ensure sufficient collaboration. Establish use of audio/video conferencing or dedicated chat
• The ideal Scrum team size is 7 (+/-2). You can have more people, but the communication gets much harder for every additional person you add.
• Decide on ground rules or team norms up front during kick off. These ground rules for the team members as how they’ll work together or resolve conflicts or how will they reach consensus

Sprints

A sprint (also known as iteration) is the basic unit of development in Scrum which is targeted to complete within 2 to 4 weeks for delivery. Each sprint starts with a sprint planning event that aims to define a sprint backlog, identify the work for the sprint, and make an estimated forecast for the sprint goal. Each sprint ends with a sprint review and sprint retrospective, that reviews progress to show to stakeholders and identify lessons and improvements for the next sprints. Scrum emphasizes working product at the end of the sprint that is really done or can be DEMOed.

Write user stories

Anyone on the team can write user stories but it’s usually the Product owner. User stories are the tactical tool scrum teams use to deliver the work for their product.

A functional user story has to be meaningful which are written as a standard template in the scrum project. Imagine for mobile lunch ordering app as an example of a good user story could be

<as a> mobile customer, <I want to> create a profile so that future orders are faster to place.

This is known as a functional user story, meaning it serves a function for the end user.

You’ll also write non-functional stories. Those stories help support the functionality the end users need without directly benefiting them. Here’s an example.

<As a> developer, <I want to> upgrade the database software to the latest version <so> that we have a supported product.

 

This above is just the basics covering some of the Scrum basics.

 There are various other key components which you as practicing agile development using scrum should be aware of such as
 • Sprint planning /Task board Sprint Burndown chart
 • Daily scrum /Stand up meets
 • Sprint review and retrospective
 • Extensions
 • Product backlog/ Backlog Priority
 • Sprint backlog
 • Product increment
 • Extensions
I will be covering them in detail in another blog soon. Feel free to send in your feedback

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