5 Reasons to Use SCRUM in Your Team Management
When you’re dealing with project management, you’ll become aware of the Scrum method sooner or later. It’s a system that’s revolutionizing the face of software development but is also bringing changes in the way we deal with overall project management.
So what is Scrum, exactly?
Defining Agile and Scrum
To understand what Scrum means, you must understand the Agile concept first. Although these terms are connected, there’s a difference between them.
As a term, Agile is used to describe a general software development approach, which emphasizes teamwork, close collaboration with customers, frequent deliveries of working versions, and quick responses to change.
Scrum is just one of the many ways to develop agile processes. It’s a very specific approach towards team management during the software development process. According to the official definition, Scrum is “a framework within which people can address complex adaptive problems, while productively and creatively delivering products of the highest possible value.” Instead of referring to it as a method, process, or technique, the creators of Scrum label it as a framework.
When software developers rely on the Scrum framework, they do not provide detailed and complete instructions on how everything should be done. Many decisions are delegated to a Scrum software development team since its members are the ones who know how to solve the problems they encounter.
These are the main roles in the Scrum team:
- The product owner
- The development team
- The Scrum master
Scrum is all about developing a cross-functional team that organizes itself. There is no authoritative team leader who’s expected to delegate daily tasks and monitor every single activity. The team, as a whole, makes decisions regarding most main issues.
Although Scrum was originally intended for managing and developing products, there’s a more general implementation of the framework today:
- It may be used for researching and identifying viable markets, product capabilities, and technologies;
- Brands use it when developing new products or updating their existent products;
- It’s a great framework to use in the process of sustaining and renewing products.
Today, we’re not going to get into details about how to develop this approach. The official Scrum Guide is a pretty great place to start getting your information from.
What we’ll focus on are the reasons why you should give Scrum a chance.
Why Should Project Managers Rely on Scrum to Coordinate Teams?
1. Scrum Teams Are Flexible!
When compared to the traditional “waterfall” approach to project management, Scrum makes a team more flexible to evolving business goals and altering requirements. The waterfall software development approach sticks to a sequential design process. The developers have to complete one stage of the process before they move onto the next step.
Many team leaders, regardless of their industries, implement this approach in their strategies. They develop a clear plan that is supposed to lead a team to a specific destination. The problem with this method is that it lacks flexibility. It does not leave any space for an error since developers cannot go back to a previous step once they progress further in the process.
Scrum enhances the flexibility and productivity levels of a team, since it leaves the possibility of flaws open, so a team can quickly go back in the stages of the development and react as quickly as possible.
2. Although It Sounds Complicated, It’s a Very Simple Framework
Most projects managers and business owners are not even interested in learning Scrum since the definition and initial explanations sound complicated at first. In its essence, this is an extremely simple framework that any team could benefit from.
To start with Scrum, you don’t have to engage in some training sessions or visit project management conferences. You just need to change your mindset as a project manager. These are the main concepts that make Scrum effective:
- The product owner, who represents goals and the best interests of a final user. This person can instruct what goes into the final product, but they delegate a lot of their decision-making authority to a team. If a business owner is not capable, a project manager can take on this role.
- The product owner will develop the Backlog, which is a list of tasks that lead to the final goal. This list is based on priorities.
- The sprint is an important part of the Scrum framework. It’s a specified timeframe for completing a set of tasks from a list of priorities.
- Daily Scrums are daily progress updates that a team discusses every day.
- Retrospective is a review session at the end of each sprint.
See? The framework is so simple that any team can implement it without much effort.
3. It’s a Very Transparent Process that Makes Stakeholder Engagement Possible
Scrum is all about transparency. That’s what Daily Scrums are all about – so that a team can discuss the progress, plan adjustments if necessary, and deliver feedback. This gives a client or business owner an opportunity to be involved in the development, as part of a team. They may offer progressive suggestions in terms of prioritizing features, making updates, or working on new features.
Stakeholder engagement is possible before, during, and after every Sprint. Thanks to that opportunity, a team can quickly identify and fix problems before the final product is delivered.
4. Customers Are in the Focus
Agile software development teams are known for placing a customer at the center of the development process. When you implement Scrum, a team will use customer stories during the product development process. Thanks to this approach, a brand will not only meet main needs of its target audience but will also provide value that other brands fail to deliver.
Basically, a team allows final users to define features that should be a priority. That’s how they end up providing more business value at the end of the process.
5. There’s a High Level of Trust in a Scrum Team
Each member of a Scrum team makes commitments to other members. The internal relations are very close and based on trust. From the very first sprint session, team members work closely together towards a common goal. They lean on each other’s skills and knowledge, so they improve their personal practices.
As this method quickly shows what each team member is capable of, individuals are given a chance to demonstrate their abilities. However, they are also being pushed to perform as an inseparable part of a team.
There it is! In its essence, Scrum is a very simple and effective framework for project management. It definitely deserves your attention!