YOUR SCRUM ADVANTAGE. Written by Licenced Agile Coach and Scrum Trainer Mandy Schoeman. Agility at its best.

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1 YOUR SCRUM ADVANTAGE Written by Licenced Agile Coach and Scrum Trainer Mandy Schoeman Agility at its best.

2 Why this guide? Looking at Scrum, it appears to be just a simple set of guidelines with new titles, meetings, stickies and white boards. Implementing an Agile framework like Scrum is time consuming and costly which requires a substantial amount of knowledge and experience which one cannot gain from a course or book. We assist leaders with their agile transition planning and organisational readiness, to support Product and IT management with role adoptions and Product Backlog readiness, to mentor Scrum Teams on their new processes (meetings and roles) and to understand an agile culture. Not only do we use creative tools and techniques to build inspired, empowered employees and keep them motivated but Scrum Solutions provides a mix of business, technical and soft skills to assist businesses achieve extra-ordinary results by radically optimising and improving software development life cycles. About Mandy Schoeman Mandy is a passionate people s person and authoritative seasoned trainer with experience in global software technology delivery, business process improvement, motivational facilitation and training. With more than two decades experience in Software development, facilitation, course development and training plus twelve years Agile Project Management. Mandy is Africa s first and only qualified Professional Scrum Coach, Professional Scrum Trainer and Professional Scrum Master through Scrum.Org. Mandy was vetted and certified in the USA by Ken Schwaber himself. As a Scrum.Org Coach, Mandy is an expert in her field and leverages the strength and experience of the entire Scrum.org community. She is an amazing coach who knows the secret to teaching complex Agile concepts in a fun easy environment ~ Ken Schwaber Just because you have a backlog and stand ups doesn t mean you re using Scrum ~Mandy Schoeman Your Scrum Advantage 1

3 Managing Projects A project involves collaborative effort to create a new product service or other result as defined in the project vision statement. All projects are impacted by constraints like time, cost, scope, quality, resources, organizational capabilities and other limitations that make them difficult to initiate, plan, estimate, implement, review, in retrospect and release. It is important for organizations to select and practice an appropriate project delivery methodology; this is where Scrum comes in. Complex Software Development Software development is a complex endeavour. Of course, this news isn t very surprising because the universe is full of complexity. Most complexities we don t know about, and others we are content to leave unexamined. Some - like the complex process by which pressure turns coal into diamonds - take care of themselves. Others - for example, commuting to work every day - can tolerate some imprecision. However, it is impossible to ignore complexity in software development. Its results are ephemeral, consisting merely of signals that Control machines. The software development process is entirely intellectual, and all of its intermediate products are marginal representations of the thoughts involved. The materials that we use to create the end product are extremely volatile: user requirements for a program the users have yet to see, the interoperation of other programs signals with the program in question, and the interaction of the most complex organisms on the planet - people. Scrum.org is owned by Scrum s co-creator, Ken Schwaber. Your Scrum Advantage 2

4 Business Agility Business agility is the ability of a business to adapt rapidly and cost efficiently in response to changes in the business environment. Business agility can be maintained by sustaining and adapting goods and services to meet customer demands, adjusting to the changes in a business environment and taking advantage of human resources. An Agile approach Agile methodologies use Emergent Architecture. With emergent design, a development starts delivering functionality and lets the design emerge. An Agile (Empirical) model is needed when: We don t know the exact outcomes at the time we begin We want to control the results and keep quality high Steps aren t always repeatable Scrum Scrum is one of the most popular Agile methodologies and is structured in such a way that it supports product and service development in all types of industries and in any type of project irrespective of its complexity. It s an adaptive iterative fast flexible and effective methodology designed to deliver significant value quickly and threw out a project; It ensures transparency and communication; It creates an environment of collective accountability and continuous progress. Scrum is based on: Team takes a shorter step in a fixed iterative manner; Team along with the Stakeholders/Customers inspects what was developed and adapts changes as needed as per customer requirements. Customer comes to know in a shorter time about the product they are waiting for; Scrum encourages change team wants customer to have the best possible product that improves/enhances lives of customers. Whereas Waterfall Model discourages changes at the later stages; Scrum understands that good ideas can come at any time during the project. Waterfall model does not. How does an Agile approach help software development? It breaks the dependency on requirements stability and come up with a process that takes into account changes. It does that by using Adaptive Planning and Evolutionary Design. Adaptive planning implies going through the project cycle many times, replanning and re-adapting often. Your Scrum Advantage 3

5 The Business Case for Scrum Organisations must continuously improve towards agility in the way they work not only to be competitive but to retain their competitive advantage in the industry. Through the adoption and implementation of an Agile methodology, organisations can achieve more predictability, productivity, profit, quality, value, risk control, satisfied customers, engaged employees and drastically reduce their waste. Key Principles of Scrum Empirical process control is based on the ideas a transparency, inspection and adaptation. Self-organization scrum is designed for today's employees who have much more knowledge to offer than just their technical expertise and two can deliver greater value when they're self-organized. Collaboration involves all the stakeholders working in interacting together to deliver the greatest value. Value-based prioritisation requirements in the respective tasks are prioritized based on the value they hold for the customer this way the requirements which are the most valuable to the customer are done first leading to increased ROI. Time boxing time is the most crucial factor in Scrum projects and meetings and work periods our time boxed the daily standup meeting is a 15-minute meeting a sprint is time boxed according to the need to the project and can vary between one to six weeks. Iterative development allows for course correction is all the people involved get a better understanding of what needs to be delivered as part of the project and incorporate this warning in an iterative manner. Scrum Values Focus: Concentrate all your thoughts upon the work at hand. The sun s rays do not burn until brought to a focus. ~Alexander Graham Bell Courage: Fortes fortuna adiuvat fortune favors the brave ~Latin proverb Openness: It is impossible for a man to learn what he thinks he already knows. ~Epictetus Commitment: Do, or do not. There is no try. ~Master Yoda Respect: I speak to everyone in the same way, whether he is the garbage man or the president of the university. ~Albert Einstein This one I ve added as I truly believe we all have the same start in life. Humility: Always acknowledge a fault. This will throw those in authority off their guard and give you an opportunity to commit more ~Mark Twain Your Scrum Advantage 4

6 The Agile Manifesto In February 2001, 17 software developers met at the Snowbird, Utah resort, to discuss lightweight development methods. They published the Manifesto for Agile Software Development to define the approach now known as agile software development. The Agile Manifesto reads, in its entirety, as follows: We are uncovering better ways of developing software by doing it and helping others do it. Through this work we have come to value: Individuals and interactions over processes and tools; Working software over comprehensive documentation; Customer collaboration over contract negotiation; Responding to change over following a plan. That is, while there is value in the items on the right, we value the items on the left more. The Agile Manifesto is based on twelve principles: 1. Customer satisfaction by rapid delivery of useful software 2. Welcome changing requirements, even late in development 3. Working software is delivered frequently (weeks rather than months) 4. Working software is the principal measure of progress 5. Sustainable development, able to maintain a constant pace 6. Close, daily cooperation between business people and developers 7. Face-to-face conversation is the best form of communication (co-location) 8. Projects are built around motivated individuals, who should be trusted 9. Continuous attention to technical excellence and good design 10. Simplicity the art of maximizing the amount of work not done is essential 11. Self-organizing teams 12. Regular adaptation to changing circumstances The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one. ~Mark Twain Your Scrum Advantage 5

7 The Scrum Process The Scrum cycle begins with the stakeholder meeting during which the project vision is created. Stakeholders and Management While Management has no formal role in Scrum, they are external to the Scrum team but are incredibly important in setting the vision and strategy to guide the overall direction of the business. Management supports the Product Owner with insights and information into high value product and system capabilities. Management supports the Scrum Master to cause organizational change that fosters empiricism, selforganization, bottom-up intelligence, and intelligent release of software. The Scrum Team consists of the following members: Scrum Master who manages the Scrum process; Product Owner who decides what to do; Development Team who does the work. Your Scrum Advantage 6

8 The Product Owner Ideally Product Owners have profit & loss accountability for the product. The Product Owner has the final word on what the Development Team is working on. The Product owner is responsible for articulating customer requirements and maintaining business justification. Product Owner Responsibilities: The Product Owner's responsibility is to optimise the Return on Investment (ROI) and the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) of the work the Development Team does; The Product Owner decides what order on the Product Backlog makes the most sense to optimize the value of the work being done by the Development Team; Optimizes the value of the Product; Creates and maintains the Product Backlog; Chooses what and when to release; Represents stakeholders and customers to the Development Team; Defines features and functionality. The Product Products have one Product Owner and one Product Backlog, regardless of how many teams are used. Any other setup makes it difficult for the Development Team to determine what it should work on. The product increment should be usable and potentially releasable at the end of every Sprint, but it does not have to be released. Product backlog The product owner then develops a prioritized product backlog which contains to prioritize listed business and project requirements written in the form %uh views are stories. Your Scrum Advantage 7

9 The Scrum Master A Scrum Master personifies agility and professionalism. Scrum Master ensures that the Scrum team is provided with environment conducive to complete the project successfully. The Scrum Master s role is a "management" position but they do not manage the team, they manage the Scrum process. If the Scrum Master role is not considered a management position in an organisation, he or she may not have the influence to remove impediments. Scrum Master Responsibilities: Ensuring communication (even training) within teams, across team boundaries while installing and maintaining the Scrum framework boundaries; Enabling close cooperation and communication across all roles and functions while dealing with colourful personalities through the Project Office and rest of the organisation to the C level; Ensuring the Scrum process is followed no matter what including the admin of invites to daily scrum, iteration review and planning meetings etc; Shielding the team from ALL external interferences while assisting the team to remove barriers/impediments; The ability to divorce themselves from technical detail while coaching the team and ensuring they re fully functional and productive. Scrum Master Personality Traits: Outgoing: This confident people-person has a good sense of humour is energetic enough to encourage good development behaviours from all sides of the Project cycle; Emotionally Intelligent: People who are drenched in emotional intelligence and empathy have the ability to identify, assess, and control the emotions not just of themselves but of others and groups; Professional: This person has high standards of personal and business behaviour, values and guiding principles enshrining rigorous ethical and moral obligations; Their conduct at work is according to sound and consistent ethical principles. Courageous: This thick-skinned person is willing to stand for the courage of their convictions when everyone around them loses their rationale; Accountable: This individual takes ownership of their mistakes, does their best to correct them and makes sure they don't make them again. They never blame others, but set an example for those who were also responsible to do as they've done. Your Scrum Advantage 8

10 The Team This team is responsible for understanding the requirements specified by the product owner and creating the deliverables. Optimal Development Team size is small enough to remain nimble and large enough to complete significant work. Fewer than three Development Team members decreases interaction and results in smaller productivity gains. More than nine members simply require too much coordination. The Development Team is responsible for: Creating the product Increment; Operating in a series of Sprints; Organising itself and its work; Collaborating with Product Owner to optimize value. Self-organizing rarely means self-managing ~ Mandy Schoeman Determining Project Progress Determining the team s capacity is critical to a successful planning session and is the first activity in the planning meeting. Sprint Progress We use a daily Burndown chart in Scrum to gage progress and facilitate visibility. Unfortunately this monitoring can be abused by management to micromanage the Development Team and demonstrate false progress. Project Progress A Velocity Chart is used as a measure of features or functionality delivered per Sprint. A Velocity Chart is used by the Product Owner to provide forecasts and The Team to gauge how much work they should pull into a Sprint Planning meeting. Your Scrum Advantage 9

11 The Sprint A successful sprint starts with the planning session. Taking the time to plan allows the team to review the work about to be undertaken, estimate the effort required to complete that work, and then commit to a prioritized list of stories and tasks that are within the team s calculated capacity.. Sprint Planning Each sprint begins with the Sprint Planning Meeting during which high-priority user stories are considered for inclusion in the Sprint. a sprint generally lasts between one and four weeks involves the Scrum team working to create potentially shippable deliverables our product increments during the Sprint In the Sprint Planning Meeting: A Sprint Goal is created The Sprint Backlog is created by The Development Team who o Selects Product Backlog items for the Sprint; o Forecasts what will be completed this Sprint; o Discusses how the tasks will be completed this Sprint. The two parts of the Sprint Planning Meeting answer the following questions, respectively: SP1 (Part One): What will be done this Sprint In this part, the Development Team works to understand the stories that will be developed during the Sprint. The Product Owner presents the ordered Product Backlog items to the Development Team and the entire Scrum Team collaborates on understanding the work of the Sprint. SP2 (Part Two): How will the chosen work be done? Having selected the work of the Sprint, the Development Team decides how it will build this functionality into a Done product Increment during the Sprint. Your Scrum Advantage 10

12 Daily Sprint/Scrum The Daily Scrum meeting is a time-boxed event for the Development Team to coordinate actions and create a plan for the next 24 hours. This is done by reviewing the work completed since the last Daily Scrum and forecasting what work will be done by the next one. The Daily Scrum occurs at the same time, same place each day and no longer than 15 minutes. ** During the meeting, each Development Team member explains: What did I do yesterday? What am I doing today? What is stopping me from achieving my work? Note: The Daily Scrum is NOT a status meeting and only the Development Team members participate in the Daily Scrum. Sprint Review Toward the end of the Sprint a sprint review meeting is held during which the product owner and relevant stakeholders are provided a demonstration of the deliverables. The product owner accepts the deliverables only if they meet the predefined acceptance criteria. ** At the end of each sprint the completed work is: Shown to the Product Owner and relevant business stakeholders by the Scrum Team; The Product Increment is inspected in relation to the requirement; Feedback is heard from all present; Feedback is used to guide the next Increment. At a Sprint Review Stakeholders are encouraged to provide information and feedback. Your Scrum Advantage 11

13 Sprint Retrospective Each Sprint cycles end with the retrospect sprint meeting with the team discusses ways to improve processes and performance as they move forward into the subsequent sprint follow-up A Retrospective gives the Scrum Team the opportunity to inspect and adapt. ** What does the Scrum Team discuss in a Retrospective? What went well in the Sprint What could be improved What will we commit to for the next Sprint Regardless of what we discover, we understand and truly believe that everyone did the best job they could, given what they knew at the time, their skills and abilities, the resources available, and the situation at hand. ~ Norm Kerth (Product) Backlog Grooming Backlog grooming (also called maintenance) is not a formal component of the Scrum process, Ken Schwaber, who founded Scrum, advises teams to dedicate 5% of every sprint to this activity. Top ordered Product Backlog items are well understood and easily selected in Sprint Planning ** What does it mean to groom an item? Plan the PBL to an actionable level of detail; Main a Rolling Backlog Projection; Plan 10% of each Sprint to be spent. Your Scrum Advantage 12

14 Getting Started with Scrum Perhaps you ve considered hiring a Scrum Coach because you re frustrated with the requirements of traditional project management and you ve read about Agile success stories. You d like to try it but don t know where to get started. The first thing you should do is hire an experienced coach to assist you. Together you will follow these steps to getting started: 1. Formulate your Team 2. Train the Team in the basics of Scrum 3. Set up your Scrum board etc 4. Write the Stories that make up your Product Backlog 5. Size all the Stories on the Backlog 6. Plan the first sprint and establish it s timeline 7. Communicate the Sprint boundaries 8. Start Sprinting The Benefits of a Scrum Coach Being an outsider, a Scrum Coach: can help you overcome the common obstacles encountered in Agile; helps you sell Agile to the entire organisation; accelerates your Agile implementation; guides you through the common pitfalls of Agile implementation; helps you push through the resistance; helps to customise the Agile framework for your organization; assists with the design of a successful working environment; brings Agile experience into your organisation; educates the entire Agile team on the Scrum methodology; identifies the types of projects that are great candidates for Agile. If any of these sound like they could benefit you, then let Scrum Solutions bring these benefits and more to your organisation. To get started, contact us to determine your coaching needs. Your Scrum Advantage 13

15 Glossary of Terms Agile: the name coined for the wider set of ideas that Scrum falls within Agile Manifesto: Agile values and principles that Scrum is based upon Burndown: (see Sprint Burndown, Product Burndown) Backlog Item (see Product Backlog Item) Daily Scrum: a fifteen-minute daily team meeting to share progress, report impediments and make commitments Done: also referred to as Done or Done Done, this term is used to describe a product increment that is considered releasable; it means that all design, coding, testing and documentation have been completed and the increment is fully integrated into the system Emergence: the principle that the best designs, and the best ways of working come about over time through doing the work, rather than being defined in advance, cf. Empiricism, Self-Organization Empiricism: the principle of inspect and adapt which allows teams or individuals to try something out and learn from the experience by conscious reflection and change, cf. Emergence, Self-Organization Epic: a very large user story that is eventually broken down into smaller stories; epics are often used as placeholders for new ideas that have not been thought out fully. Estimation: the process of agreeing on a size measurement for the stories in a product backlog. Done by the team, usually using Planning Poker Fibonacci Sequence: the sequence of numbers where the next number is derived by adding together the previous two; the sequence has the quality of each interval getting larger as the numbers increase; the sequence is often used for Story Points, simply because estimates are always less accurate when dealing with epics Impediment: anything that prevents the team from meeting their potential (e.g. chairs are uncomfortable). Impediment Backlog: a visible list of impediments in a priority order according to how seriously they are blocking the team from productivity Planning Poker: a game used to apply estimates to stories; it uses the Delphi method of arriving at consensus Product Backlog: a prioritized list of stories that are waiting to be worked on Product Backlog Item: any item that is on the backlog list, which will include user stories, epics and possibly technical stories to deal with technical debt, etc. Product Owner: person whom holds the vision for the product and is responsible for maintaining, prioritizing and updating the product backlog Retrospective: a session where the Team and Scrum Master reflect on the process and make commitments to improve Your Scrum Advantage 14

16 Scrum Master: a servant leader to the team, responsible for removing impediments and making sure the process runs smoothly so the team can be as productive as possible Self-Organization: the principle that those closest to the work best know how to do the work, so set clear goals and boundaries and let them make all tactical and implementation decisions, cf. Emergence, Empiricism Sprint: time boxed iteration Sprint Burndown: a visible chart that indicates on a daily basis the amount of work remaining in the sprint Sprint Goal: aka Sprint Theme, the key focus of the work for a single sprint Sprint Planning: a meeting between the Team and the Product Owner to plan the sprint and arrive at an agreement on the commitment Sprint Task: a single small item of work that helps one particular story reach completion Stakeholder: anyone external to the team with an interest in the product being developed Story: a backlog item usually using the template form: as a [user] I want [function] so that [business value], Product Backlog Item Story Point: a unit of measurement applied to the size of a story, cf. Fibonacci sequence Sprint Board: a wall chart with cards and sticky notes that represent all the work of a team in a given sprint; the task notes are moved across the board to show progress Team: the development team, responsible committing to work, delivering and driving the product forward from a tactical perspective Team Member: any member of the team, including developers, testers, designers, writers, graphic artists, database admins... Time Boxing: setting a duration for every activity and having it last exactly that (i.e. neither meetings nor sprint are ever lengthened - ever) Velocity: the rate at which a team completes work, usually measured in story points. Vision Statement: a high-level description of a product which includes who it is for, why it is necessary and what differentiates it from similar products XP Practices: the set of development practices, including pair-programming, test-first, or test-driven development (TDD) and continuous refactoring, which are drawn from the XP methodology. Ignoring any of the rules of Scrum seriously impacts the benefits it can provide ~Mandy Schoeman Thank you! Your Scrum Advantage 15

17 References 1. Schwaber & Sutherland: Scrum Guide, 2. Ken Schwaber: The Enterprise and Scrum, Microsoft Press. 3. Nonaka, Ikujiro and Takeuchi, Hirotaka: The New, New Product Development Game, Harvard Business Review. 4. Henrik Kniberg: Scrum and XP from the Trenches, InfoQ. 5. Schwaber & Sutherland: Software in 30 Days, Wiley.com 6. M Schoeman: 5 Traits of the perfect Scrum Master, scrumsolutions.co.za/articles 7. Gunther Verheyen: Scrum A Pocket Guide, Van Haren Publishing 8. Charles Bradley: User Story Basics, 9. Steve Denning: The Leader's Guide to Radical Management, Jossey-Bass; 1 edition (October 12, 2010) 10. The Agile Manifesto: John Kotter: Our Iceberg is Melting, St Martin s Press. 12. Your Scrum Advantage 16

18 About Scrum Solutions Scrum Solutions is a Business Improvement Consultancy, situated in the most beautiful part of South Africa: Cape Town. Scrum Solutions assist enterprises achieve extra-ordinary results through waste elimination by decreasing their software development project by 80% and making 65% more profit than their counterparts. We provide Software Development organisations with effective best practices to implement Agile Methodologies such as Scrum, XP and Kanban for on time, within budget, scope changing IT projects enabling organisations to gain the competitive edge in a swiftly evolving environment. Our revolutionary business improvement blueprint is not a prescriptive set of directions to a single desired future, but rather a game plan that allows a company to be successful no matter how an uncertain, changing business environment unfolds. Our unique practices and tools allow us to scale your agile transition in the best way for your organisation. It enables us to understand your unique requirements and goals to successfully adopt a predictable yet flexible way of working suited to your needs. Scrum Solutions S.E.M.I program helps organisations navigate complex cross functional changes, increase Agile competencies at the individual, team and company level. We work with managers across functions to implement sustainable business practices for competitive advantage incorporating: Strategy: using an incremental, iterative and transparent approach we align all business areas to the Agile process; Expertise: using our embedded Agile expert we collaborate with teams on deliverables while mentoring them on Agile best practices; Metrics: using baseline and on-going metrics for visibility of product delivery, program progress and analyses of program evolution; Indicators (Management): aligning business to an Agile framework integrating KPI s and legal contracts. Website: Mobile: Skype: mandy.krog

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