Agile - Scrum

Philosophy behind the Scrum

Akmal Bek
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The Agile Scrum

People often speak of Agile and Scrum together when talking about software development methodology. Well, they are not wrong as the two are closely related. The Agile model is a process which enables multiple software teams to collaborate in a flexible framework using incremental and iterative time-boxes or sprints to break down work cycles. One of the several popular framework processes that Agile uses is Scrum.

Interestingly, the terminology “Scrum” is derived from the game of rugby, where the players charge down the field towards the goal through teamwork. The philosophy behind Scrum can be enumerated in six easy to understand principles.

· Scrum is an empirical process control which combines inspection, adaptation and transparency as its main aspects.

· To drive innovation and creativity, Scrum emphasizes on self-organization more than anything else.

· Being an implementation framework of Agile, Scrum can only function in a collaborative work environment.

· Like the Agile model, Scrum focuses on optimization by assigning a value and prioritizing each component of the project in the software development life cycle.

· Time-boxing, as a project management tool, is one of the highlight areas of Scrum. Sprint planning and review, and daily Scrum are considered as crucial elements of Scrum philosophy. These are meeting points where various teams work out strategies, review progress and find solution to challenges faced.

· Change management in Scrum is processed through iterative development to achieve customer satisfaction and delight.

What are the roles in Scrum..

To understand Scrum better, it is essential to know more about the roles and artifacts that drive this process. The three main Scrum roles are:

· Product Owner in Scrum is the person ultimately responsible for a combination of roles – strategizing business model, designing of the product, analyzing the market, acting as a liaison with the customer as well as working as the project manager.

· Scrum Master can be either an individual or an entire team who is the process owner to implement the Agile methodology and practices for the software development process from start to finish. A Scrum Master can ensure that timeboxes are properly maintained, and coordinate with various teams to minimize the effects of external interruptions on the project.

· The rest of the members are loosely termed as the Team and includes software architects, developers, programmers, testers, and QA engineers, among others.

A brief overview of the main Scrum artifacts is vital to understanding how this methodology has gained such popularity in recent times.

· A pragmatic approach to work is impossible to achieve unless an ordered list is present detailing the customer’s requirements. The Product Backlog is exactly that, and it helps in prioritizing the functionalities that need to be focused on first.

· Sprint Backlog is an essential part of sprint planning and is a redistribution of the Product Backlog in any given sprint.

· To give an idea of how much of the allocated time is left on any given sprint, the sprint burndown chart is used, while the release burndown chart tracks the amount of work done and left till project release date.

Summarizing the advantage of Scrum is quite easy. Even in today’s scenarios where geographical locations separate the various teams working on a project, following Scrum philosophy has proven beneficial and a huge success.

More information about Scrum Master and Certification can be found here.

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