Best Scrum Software and Tools for 2021
Businesses continue to adopt agile principles and practices in projects because of the benefits they provide such as transparency, flexibility, and early and reliable delivery. Agile started being used in software development to address the longstanding problems unsolved by using traditional approaches. To provide more specific structure to agile principles, several methodologies were developed, the leader being Scrum. The Scrum methodology enables teams to react quicker and respond more accurately to change. Its practices guide teams to stay focused and effectively collaborate and communicate.
What is Scrum?
Scrum is an agile approach to managing projects. It is used mainly in software development projects, but teams are now adopting Scrum for other types of projects. Unlike other project management methodologies, the Scrum approach is focused on managing the process, and is therefore better described as a framework rather than a methodology. Scrum supports self-organizing teams and allows them to solve problems the best way they know how rather than follow a step-by-step standard method.
In Scrum, there are only two specific roles in the team. They are the product owner who represents the business, customers, and users, and the ScrumMaster, who coaches the team how to effectively use the Scrum process. Scrum teams plan and work in sprints—a defined time ranging from two weeks to one month—to accomplish a prioritized task list called a sprint backlog. The team holds a daily Scrum meeting where each member shares yesterday’s work, what they will work on next, and any issues that may prevent their work.
At the end of the sprint, one or several features are built into the working software. Also, a sprint review or retrospective is held where the new functionality is demonstrated to the product owner. Feedback is taken to be part of the next sprint planning session.
Scrum software features
Scrum software is project management software that allows teams to complete projects in sprints. It supports practices that are specific to Scrum, such as having a collaboration tool to hold daily Scrum meetings, whether face-to-face or remotely. It includes a feature for a product owner to easily list and prioritize the order of tasks in a backlog. Scrum tools allow teams to work on big and complex projects through small iterations. It includes features to track the status and progress of tasks, accept and accommodate change requests, and capture team performance metrics.
Best Scrum software and tools
We recommend the following project management and Scrum software to help you manage and track your sprints. We based our selection on multiple site reviews, customer feedback, development updates, support, and market ranking.
Jira Software supports Scrum and other agile project management methodologies specifically for software development. It has a Scrum board to plan sprints, list backlogs, estimate stories, adjust scope, check velocity, and re-prioritize issues. Teams can create their custom workflows and issue types to better track and mange sprints. Other features include dashboard for standups and various reports for retrospectives.
Favro is an all-in-one cloud platform for teams to do collaborative writing, planning, project & organizational work. It’s a digital office space which transforms any organization into an Agile business by empowering all teams to work autonomously. Favro can be your source of truth to increase transparency and ensure accountability by monitoring projects and measuring OKRs. Teams and leaders can see an overview of tasks and projects which allows your organization to forecast issues before they become issues and prevent bottlenecks that can help make smarter data-driven decisions. Favro makes team collaboration smoother than ever, whether you are working remotely or at the office.
Microsoft Azure Boards
Azure Boards enables teams to track projects using Kanban boards, backlogs, team dashboards, and custom reporting. A drag-and-drop interface makes it easy to plan sprints, and item tracking allows teams to have transparency and traceability of what is being worked on. It has built-in Scrum boards and planning tools so they can work collaboratively during sprints, standups, and reviews. Teams can customize dashboards and workflows, and integrate with Microsoft Teams and Slack for real-time communication.
Zoho Sprints is an online agile project management software. It promotes transparency and accountability with a variety of reports that include velocity, burndown, and burnup charts, cumulative flow diagram, epic progress, and timesheet report. A collaboration center called Feed allows teams to find updates, reminders, and notifications, as well as post comments for one another. Other features include a Scrum board, dashboard, and integrations.
Asana is a versatile software that can be used for agile project management. It is a flexible Scrum tool that helps teams plan, organize, and manage agile projects. Useful features include boards, Timelines, custom fields, and dependencies. Common Scrum concepts can be easily translated to Asana, such as using a project portfolio to represent an epic, a project for a feature, and tasks for stories. Conversations allow teams to communicate, make announcements, ask a question, or comment on a task.
Monday.com is team software that provides flexibility for different teams including Scrum teams. It is a software ideal for product development with features that allow for iteration planning, bug tracking, backlogs, and product roadmaps. It supports the whole process, from sprint planning, task tracking, to getting feedback. It also has a Scrum sprint planning template that improves visibility.
Wrike is a project management software that includes agile tools to help teams deliver early and fast. It has customizable workspace, workload balancing, team communication, intake forms, dashboards, and automatic status report tools that provide the needed support Scrum teams need to manage their sprints. It also has ready-to-use sprint templates and integrations.
ProjectManager is an online software that is flexible and ideal for Scrum teams. It offers easy-to-use templates for sprint planning, boards to manage and track sprints, built-in communication tools to facilitate daily standups, dashboards, resource charts, and reports. It is a collaborative software that allows distributed teams to work together from anywhere at anytime.
Assembla is a cloud-based project management software that supports multiple methodologies including Scrum. It is highly visual with cardwalls and task boards to show real-time updates. Manage tickets, set milestones, integrate with popular code repositories, and access projects on the go with a mobile IOS app. It supports several backlog management frameworks including Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) and Scale Scrum (LeSS).
Clarizen Go is an agile task management tool that allows teams to plan and track projects easily. It supports Scrum with tools for epics, stories, sprint management, and retrospectives to help teams deliver software faster and with better results. It has a centralized view to improve transparency, consolidates statuses of all workflow stages, multiple views, and file management.
Axosoft is an agile project management software that provides powerful and comprehensive Scrum software features. It has a release planner to view the capacities of the team and the sprint, a fully interactive board and card view to track sprints, and custom dashboards to provide an overview of the team’s velocity and projected ship date. It also includes ticketing, help desk, and wiki tools.
These Scrum tools represent a small portion of what is available in the market and aims to provide a launch pad to help you find the best agile project management tool suited for your team and organization.