What is Scrum- Everything you need to know

In this article, we discuss what Scrum is, how it is different from Agile and other methods of software development, the application of Scrum to the management of software projects, how it can be implemented in real life, and how Scrum can help you build a sustainable software business.

Nov 21, 2023
What is Scrum- Everything you need to know
In this article, we discuss what Scrum is, how it is different from Agile and other methods of software development, the application of Scrum to the management of software projects, how it can be implemented in real life, and how Scrum can help you build a sustainable software business.

What is Scrum?

Scrum is a framework for developing software products. It's designed to be flexible and allow you to work in a fast-paced environment with frequent changes, while still delivering high-quality results.
Scrum is an iterative process that allows developers to rapidly develop features and meet deadlines by breaking them down into smaller tasks or "sprints." These sprints are then broken down into shorter "daily scrums" where team members report on their progress each day, giving stakeholders regular updates on how far along they are in development.

The Scrum Framework

The Scrum framework is the name for an Agile development process, which provides a fixed set of rules to help software developers build their programs. This ensures that you don't run into problems during the development stage of your product.
The overall idea is that you provide regular updates and feedback to stakeholders (people who are interested in how your project is going). Likewise, they can provide feedback and ideas to help keep things on track. The Scrum process involves breaking down the project into small steps, each one providing valuable information about what works and what doesn't. By regularly checking with stakeholders, teams can adjust and update their plans as necessary before resuming work on the next step.

The Scrum Values

Agile software development is often a highly unpredictable and volatile process, so it requires smart people and the ability to accept change. Scrum includes five parts that are overarching values in agile engineering:
  • Product focus and satisfaction of customer desires (timeliness)
  • Seamless feedback from customers, engaged staff (continuous improvement)
  • Integrating work from different backgrounds into an efficient team workflow with goodwill toward outsiders.
  • Adaptability, creativity and outside-the-box thinking are encouraged, regardless of the history or education level (innovation)
  • Uncertainty as a positive. Always move toward uncertainty.

The Scrum Team

The Scrum values align well with today's world and the understanding of how to modernly build teams. Despite this alignment, it can be difficult for organizations trying to adopt agile engineering practices. That's why many companies add a small team or individual who helps guide potential changes and offers perspective on shifts in organizational culture that may need adjustment along the way. There are three major roles in a scrum team. Let's learn about them.

The scrum product owner

The team's scrum product owner is a single person who among other things maintains the product backlog, prioritizing work and allocating tasks within the sprint, using velocity to keep themselves informed. This role leads to optimized productivity while elevating personal responsibility in shaping projects.

The Scrum Master

Often, the role of a scrum master is given to someone within one particular department. This person plays an important part in helping everyone make good progress during their project by designing working habits, focusing on effectiveness rather than efficiency or speed.
It's also their duty as team coach that helps ensure success for every stage of production by overseeing the smooth running of activities, which can help to guard against potential disruptions in schedule and waste. Teams impact more than just their own process because a scrum master is focused on how agile engineering practices work together with other change management techniques for maximum results.

The scrum development team

Likewise, the development team is made up of a cross-section of people that help with research and analysis including designers, developers, product managers or quality engineers. It might also include stakeholders when working on projects involving human relations or marketing products for general release in order to best serve customer needs.
It's important for companies to have an individual who helps guide these changes since they may not be prepared from just adopting it from scratch themselves straight away.

Scrum Artifacts

In the context of agile software development, Scrum is a framework for managing projects. It was originally used in product development but has since been adapted to work with other fields as well.
The three main artifacts are:
1\. Product Backlog: The list of all ideas that need to be developed or built.
2\. Sprint Backlog: A prioritized list of tasks that will be worked on during a sprint and a plan for completing them by the end of the sprint period.
3\. Sprint Burndown: An agenda for the Daily Stand-up that includes what has been completed, impediments to progress and upcoming tasks.
The three artifacts are used in conjunction with each other to track product development from beginning until end so that work can be measured according to how well it is progressing also allowing for continuous feedback loops and improvements over time.

Scrum Events

The Sprint serves as a hub for all other activities. Scrum provides a structured chance to examine and adapt Scrum objects at each event. These gatherings are expressly organised to provide the necessary transparency. Any event that is not operated according to the instructions will result in missed opportunities to check and modify. Scrum uses events to generate regularity and to reduce the requirement for meetings that aren't part of the Scrum framework.
To simplify complexity, all events should be held at the same time and location.

The Sprint

The sprint is a time-box where changes to the software are designed and developed. Iterations allow for regular optimization of this process by providing automated checkpoints that improve scalability and data accuracy. To complete functioning products, iterations will be distributed across weeks or months depending on when it falls according to business demands — even not every week with some options such as subsets of weeks being included at each event in order to reduce overhead costs.

Sprint Planning

The sprint planning meeting gives everyone in the organisation a chance to highlight and understand what their roles are during that time-box. During this meeting, developers will share updates about the product at hand before assigning tasks for those days keeping in mind the scope of work needed by each person to complete it successfully no matter how limited or extended.
The participants see if anyone wants an extend or break from these current tasks — possible due to personal circumstances with the members of the team.

The Sprint Retrospective

After each sprint, retrospective meetings are held to gain feedback on what went well and what could be improved upon during that time-box. This allows for planning changes accordingly based on previous activities such as giving more input into specific tasks or reworking how they will be completed in order to avoid any repetition — a sign of highly reactive development.
After reviewing everything from tangible items like stories being completed to qualitative feedback on feeling comfortable as an individual and team, the best way forward is decided. This also allows for improvements before the next sprint through possible adjustments like adding more individuals or changing which tasks need completed.

The Sprint Review

Once everything has been slated in this meeting with potential alterations still being made during these meetings, a final meeting will be held to review all that was done during those weeks and come up with product goals — what needs done before next sprint, what release should be ready etc.
These meetings take place throughout the project at the same time to make sure no important tasks are missed while also working towards a multiple goals in mind. Through these Sprints and retrospectives — meeting after each one — we develop ourselves continuing to learn how to work better through a continuous feedback loop with ourself on top of this improving product development for all.

Daily Scrum

During the Daily Stand-up meeting, all team members discuss what they were able to complete during the past day and what roadblocks may have occurred which at some point can be predict or prevent.
Here's how to adjust your sprint goals:
At the Daily Standup, discuss and decide what needs adjusting but don't take too much time. It should not be drawn out, it should be short, concise and to the point. Sometimes you need more detailed discussions with fellow team members or other people involved in the project ( eg other teams working on other parts of the project) so it is constructive to have another meeting alternatively either before or after stand-up. To shorten stand ups and make it more structured, a useful way is to write down any changes afterwards if a new process is being introduced, people find it easier to remember things when they are written down.

Wrapping up

Scrum is a framework for product development. It is an iterative and incremental approach to building software that can be scaled to multiple teams with different capabilities. The scrum framework helps you organize your team, define the product backlog, measure progress and adapt as needed.