The Beginner’s Guide To Scrum And Agile Project Management

Agile: An Overview

The practice of pliable methods, based on the principles of the Agile Manifesto. Agile methodology is used in the Software Development Life Cycle, SDLC, where an agile framework provides a dynamic and flexible approach to the whole development procedure.

In an agile method, the work is completed in small parts, called as Iterations. One iteration is usually scheduled to be delivered within two to four weeks.

Agile is further classified into several forms, each with the same philosophies and practices but slightly different implementation, namely, scrum, Lean Software Development, KANBAN, XP, etc.

Main Features of Agile Project Management

  1. Ensures Customer satisfaction by delivering sprints time-to-time.
  2. Always encourages the change in the requirements, no matter how late or early product owner tells.
  3. Ensures the delivery of software that works within a shorter time-scale.
  4. All the team members, scrum master and product owner, communicate regularly throughout the completion of the project.
  5. Encourages in-person conversations
  6. Motivates scrum team with appreciation, trust, and employee empowerment.
  7. Provides a well-equipped working atmosphere.
  8. Keeps a constant check on the quality of the products delivered.

Scrum: An Overview

Scrum is an Agile framework for project managers to outline their development process. It focuses on the management of scrum tasks inside a team-based environment.

The Scrum model ensures that work must be done in an iterative way in the form of sprints. Every sprint starts with a short meeting and ends with a feedback.

Basic Scrum Terminology

You should be aware of some of the essential terms used in Agile Project Management. They are as under:

Scrum Master: The ScrumMaster is a moderator between the team and the owner of the product. Instead of actually working in a team, the Scrum Master is responsible for assisting both the team and the product owner.

Product Owner: Product owner is an individual that has the final authority to represent the interests of the customer’s backlog prioritization and requirements questions

Sprint: A sprint is a 30-days, iterative, and well-focused working of team members towards a sprint goal.

Team Member: A team member is the one who works on sprints to accomplish sprint goals. Generally, the team consists of 5-9 members.

Sprint Planning: It is a negotiable meeting between the team members and the product owner to decide what the team shall work on in the next sprint

Daily Scrum: It is a regular 15 minutes meeting during which each team member explains about the work they did yesterday, what will they do today or discuss any issue, occurring during the work.

Backlog: The product backlog is a consistently prioritized to-do list. This list includes both non-functional and functional needs of the customer and the technical team.

Workings Of Scrum

Here is a list of the key process that must be followed while using Scrum Methodology

Planning Meeting

The planning meeting is the initiation point of scrum methodology. In this meeting, the entire technical team, scrum master, and product owner assembled to brainstorm on the selected user story from the product backlog.

Based on the conclusion, the team carefully observes the complexity of the backlog and decides if it should be their sprint goal.

Work Progress

It is mandatory for the scrum group to complete their sprint on time with speed and accuracy. The group works on stories until they reach the sprint goal. Every story is arranged, with a step-by-step guide, in such a way that it’s easy for the team to know how the development is progressing.

Daily and Sprint Review Meeting

In daily standup meetings, each team member tells about three things.

  1. What did he do the previous day?
  2. What tasks will he do today?
  3. Tells about if there is any issue stopping him from completing their tasks for the day.

Whereas, in sprint review meetings, the team illustrates the working of the product delivered to the product owner and everyone else who is interested. This meeting includes the live demonstration of the product, not the report.

The product owner can cross check the stories according to the acceptance criteria.

Retrospective Meeting

Review Meeting is followed by Retrospective Meeting, in which the scrum team discusses the following points:

  1. The success of the sprint.
  2. Any flaws occur while working on that sprint.
  3. Lessons Learnt.
  4. Significant backlogs to be acted upon as soon as possible.
  5. Exactly what went well in the sprint.

Recommended Project Management Software

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Andrey Drozhzhin

Andrey is an MBA with 20-years of experience in business development and commercial operations. He’s successfully facilitated the launches of numerous business projects. Strategic management is his great passion. Currently, he leads a strategic-planning project Roadmap Planner at KeepSolid.