Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Why use scrum (or any other agile process)?

Scrum is a process framework for creating your own agile process, meeting the goals of your particular organisation.  Some aspects as to why you would use scrum (over some other non-agile  or non-iterative process) are as follows:

Managing risk and change effectively
  • By using small steps and quick feedback (tests, customers) errors from misunderstandings are quickly addressed.
  • Focusing on the most valuable and most risky aspect of the project up front reduce the cost of failure and therefore give a greater understanding of risk in the project. 
  • Leaving options open until the last responsible moment (avoiding big up front design) reduces the risk of wasted work and helps facilitate change in line with the business goal.  Architecture evolves instead of being fixed / ridged

A light touch of order to the chaos
  • Defines principles to aim for rather than cold dogma
  • Defining a flow of work and the roles and responsibilities to manage and maintain that flow
  • Organising without stifling the creativity or variation that increases value of the work

Faster time to market
  • By releasing functionality early and often, feedback is greatly increased and real understanding of what is needed is quicker to arrive.
  • As work is done in small self contained pieces it can be created and delivered quickly

Improved quality
  • Defects are discovered and tackled early by including testing aspects and only software needed by the customer is developed

Improved stakeholder satisfaction
  • Stakeholders (customers, testers, developers, ba's, etc) have greater involvement and influence in the product development and therefore have more affinity to the project.

Greater employee engagement
  • Involved in the whole process & decision making activities giving them a greater understanding of the value of their work

Higher productivity and lower costs
  • Only building what's immediately needed reduces the waste of developing things that are not wanted.  
  • Smaller code bases should on average have fewer bugs, so writing less code is more productive.

This is by no means an exhaustive list of reasons to start agile adoption (with scrum or similar approaches) but give you a flavour as to the aims and benefits of an agile way of working.

Take a look at my scrum overview for more deals of the aspects of scrum.

Quotes about Kanban

@agilemanager Funniest comment on my talk, "I don't want to be the girl w/ a reputation for always saying 'yes'" ;-) @llillian #lkbe10


  1. interesting blog. It would be great if you can provide more details about it. Thanks you

    Scrum Proces

  2. Nice Post, Scrum enhances team productivity and collaboration , better customer satisfaction and less bureaucracy as the communication is done in daily scrum meetings individually.

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