As outlined in the previous post there are 4 most commonly used methods of agile software; Scrum, XP, Kanban and Lean. Throughout the following weeks I will be discussing Scrum and hope to give you a better understanding of this method as a whole. Within this post I will be introducing Scrum as a framework and giving you a brief over view of the steps involved to help with the understanding of this method.
Scrum is one of the most popular agile frame works, helping teams deliver software in small iterations (known as sprints) which last 1-4 weeks. As it is a frame work rather than a methodology it must be tailored to suit the needs of the individual. The simplest definition of scrum which I have been able to find is reflected in the sport from which it got its name. Within a rugby scrum there is a team working together as one unit and aggressively trying to advance the ball. This approach is demonstrated in Scrum where we have a cross functional team which is focused on advancing the common goal. The team approach carried out in Scrum can be compared and contrasted with the more sequential approach seen in more traditional methods of software development e.g Waterfall.
Scrum Made Simple-a brief overview:
- Stakeholders come up with a list of requirements
- This list of requirements (called the product backlog) is prioritised
- A cross functional team is established to work together on the backlog
- A product owner is introduced to ensure the prioritisation of the backlog and is responsible for the return on investment
- A scrum master is introduced to facilitate this entire process and ensure the team is delivering value
- The team, product owner and scrum master are referred to as the committed team while the stake holders are referred to as the involved team
- The scrum team works in fixed time boxes known as sprints
- Each sprint is the same length and is made up of as many backlog requirements which can be completed in the given sprint time frame
- The team has a daily scrum meeting which is 15 minutes long where they ask themselves 3 questions:
- What did I complete yesterday?
- What am I working on today?
- What is slowing me down?
11. A sprint review is carried out at the end of each sprint. Here members show what they have completed
12. After the sprint review is the sprint retrospective where the team discusses what went well and what needs to improve
Below is a diagram which portrays the steps above: