Scrum Overview

Scrum (n): A framework within which people can address complex adaptive problems, while productively and creatively delivering products of the highest possible value. Scrum is:

  • Lightweight
  • Simple to understand
  • Extremely difficult to master

Scrum is a process framework that has been used to manage complex product development since the early 1990s. Scrum is not a process or a technique for building products; rather, it is a framework within which you can employ various processes and techniques. Scrum makes clear the relative efficacy of your product management and development practices so that you can improve.

Scrum Framework

The Scrum framework consists of Scrum Teams and their associated roles, events, artifacts, and rules. Each component within the framework serves a specific purpose and is essential to Scrum’s success and usage.

Specific strategies for using the Scrum framework vary and are described elsewhere.

The rules of Scrum bind together the events, roles, and artifacts, governing the relationships and interaction between them.

Scrum Theory

Scrum is founded on empirical (experimental, practical) process control theory. Empiricism asserts that knowledge comes from experience and making decisions based on what is known. Scrum employs an iterative, incremental approach to optimize predictability and control risk.

Three pillars uphold every implementation of empirical process control: transparency, inspection, and adaptation.

Transparency

Significant aspects of the process must be visible to those responsible for the outcome. Transparency requires those aspects be defined by a common standard so observers share a common understanding of what is being seen.

For example:

  • A common language referring to the process must be shared by all participants; and,
  • A common definition of “Done”1 must be shared by those performing the work and those accepting the work product.

Inspection

Scrum users must frequently inspect Scrum artifacts and progress toward a goal to detect undesirable variances. Their inspection should not be so frequent that inspection gets in the way of the work. Inspections are most beneficial when diligently performed by skilled inspectors at the point of work.

Adaptation

If an inspector determines that one or more aspects of a process deviate outside acceptable limits, and that the resulting product will be unacceptable, the process or the material being processed must be adjusted. An adjustment must be made as soon as possible to minimize further deviation.

Scrum prescribes four formal opportunities for inspection and adaptation :

  • Sprint Planning Meeting
  • Daily Scrum
  • Sprint Review Meeting
  • Sprint Retrospective …

[Courtesy: Scrum Guide from www.scrum.org]

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