Essential elements of Agile Scrum

Do you know that Scrum won’t judge you by your industry? The Scrum framework was created keeping the software developers in mind, but anyone can use this framework to resolve complex problems. And that is one of the reasons why Scrum is so popular. The ideal scrum team is made with a group of highly adaptive people who are not afraid to receive feedback, adapt to change, and deliver iteratively.

Essential elements of Scrum Framework

Scrum framework consists of roles, artifacts, and events. Roles are there to have clear accountability, artifacts are there for transparency, and events are opportunities to inspect and adapt. Let’s deep dive into Scrum.

Let’s begin with roles — there are three roles in the Scrum framework. Product Owner, Scrum Master, and Developers. Product owners are often referred to as value maximizers because they focus on optimizing the value of the work done by the scrum team. Developers are accountable for creating increments for every Sprint that meets the definition of done. Scrum Masters are accountable for scrum adoption and the scrum team’s effectiveness.

Next, the artifacts — Product Backlog helps everyone, including stakeholders, to understand what’s required to develop or improve the product. Sprint Backlog is a plan by and for the developers to accomplish the Sprint Goal. And the Increment is the sum of all the work done by the team so far.

Now the events — Sprint is a container event that consists of all four other events. Sprint Planning is deciding why the team needs this Sprint, what they can achieve and how they can achieve it. Daily Scrum is to inspect progress toward the Sprint Goal and adapt the Sprint Backlog as necessary. Sprint review is to inspect Sprint’s outcome (Increment) and adapt future work. Sprint Retrospective helps the team to inspect themselves and to bring continuous improvement.

Putting it together

Scrum starts like any other agile product development practice where stakeholders come up with a clear purpose in a vision statement. Stakeholders choose a Product Owner either among themselves or from outside. The Product Owner prepares a Product Goal and comes up with an initial Product Backlog. The Product Owner will make a Scrum Team with the help of other stakeholders that consists of Developers and Scrum Master.

The Scrum Team starts sprinting, and Sprint can go up to a month. Sprint Planning is the first event that takes place in the Sprint. During Sprint Planning, Scrum Team comes with a Sprint Goal that clarifies why the Sprint is essential. Developers pull the work from Product Backlog and forecast what they can essentially do during the Sprint. The timebox for Sprint Planning is eight hours.

Once Sprint Planning is over, Developers start executing their plan, and they meet every day for a maximum of 15 minutes during Daily Scrum. They review their progress towards the Sprint Goal and adjust the plan to meet the Goal during Daily Scrum.

Towards the end of Sprint, Scrum Team invites Stakeholders during Sprint Review to inspect Sprint’s outcome in the form of Increment. Stakeholders review the outcomes keeping the Product Goal in mind. A necessary discussion occurs between the stakeholders and the Scrum Team to see what best can be done in future Sprints looking at the progress made so far towards the Product Goal. It may result in adapting the Product Roadmap. In a Scrum environment, the Product Backlog is the Product Roadmap.

At the end of the Sprint, Scrum Team meets to inspect themselves and the product quality defined using the Definition of Done. This event is named Sprint Retrospective. The Scrum Team will review the team relationships, collaboration, processes followed during the Sprint, and the Definition of Done with an anticipated outcome of a few improvement commitments for the team to challenge themselves in the upcoming Sprint. The Definition of Done is also improved.

That’s all. Now that a Sprint has ended, it is time to start the next Sprint right away.

Agile Coach and Professional Scrum Trainer (PST) @Agilemania, Servant leader @Agile 30 and Developer @GitHub, Ranting @LinkedIn & an Artist @YouTube