All companies must use Scrum

Agile project managementThis is how Scrum works

In addition to the roles, it is above all the process that is characteristic of Scrum. It all starts with a product vision; an idea of ​​the product that the client of the project wants to promote and that also brings benefits to the users. Such a rough idea of ​​the product or the solution that is to be developed in the Scrum project is the order. The product vision is translated into story cards that describe individual elements, features and functions of the product from the user's point of view.

This is the basis on which an agile Scrum project starts. Then the Scrum process comprises the following steps:

1. Create and maintain the product backlog

A so-called product backlog is compiled from the requirements of the product owner and the story cards. This is a collection of all the functions and features that the product should have. This compilation is rough at the beginning, but it becomes more and more precise as the project progresses.

Priorities are assigned in the product backlog. The elements and functions that are most important and ensure a high level of user satisfaction are given high priority. Other requirements are not so important, can be sorted out, are merged with others, are not technically feasible or are postponed. They will then be dealt with when the product is revised or expanded.

2. Create the sprint backlog in sprint planning

Agile project management with Scrum is an iterative process that consists of several sprints until the desired product is completed. The sprint is the core of a Scrum project. It is a fixed period of time (time box) of a maximum of one month.

In sprint planning, the tasks for the next upcoming sprint are planned and the sprint goal is formulated. They result from the entries on the Product Backlog and the priorities. Sprint planning clarifies:

  • What will be developed, created or implemented in the next sprint?
  • How are the corresponding tasks and work done?

The scrum team creates a sprint backlog from this. This is a selection of the product backlog entries for the next sprint, supplemented by the implementation plan. It is also clear how it is visible whether the task has been completed and the partial product (increment) of the sprint has been created. The so-called “Definition of Done” is formulated.

A single task that needs to be done is called a ticket. All tickets are listed in the so-called Sprint Backlog. In a sense, this is the action plan and the worklist for the development team for the next sprint. Each team member takes responsibility for individual tickets (declaration of commitment). In the sprint, the team members work on their tasks, the tickets, until they are finished and the "done" is achieved.

3. Discuss work progress in the Daily Scrum

During the daily 15-minute meeting, the so-called Daily Scrum, everyone reports in turn: What they have done since the last Daily Scrum, what they will do until the next Daily Scrum and what hinders their work. Everyone has the sprint goal in view and checks whether it can still be achieved. The scrum master has to pick up the obstacles and help that they are removed. A sprint burndown chart shows how the project is progressing.

4. Check and approve the sprint results in the sprint review

Each sprint is concluded with a sprint review meeting. The team presents the results and the partial products to the product owner. It checks whether they meet the criteria set out in the Definition of Done. If that is the case, he accepts the sprint results. The entry in the Sprint Backlog is now checked. At the same time, the entries in the Product Backlog are updated or adjusted.

The next sprint can start with the results of the sprint review and the revised product backlog. The process starts again with step 2. This is followed by as many sprints as it takes for the product to be developed and the project to be completed.

5. Discuss the collaboration with a Sprint Retrospective

In separate meetings between a sprint review and the next sprint planning, the team members can discuss how the sprint went in terms of cooperation between the people involved, processes, communication and tools. They record what should be improved for the next sprint. The findings should be used for future Scrum projects; this supports a learning process.

All steps in the Scrum process are summarized in the following figure.