Scrum

Project manager

The project manager is not actually provided for in Scrum. He can be a useful addition to Scrum.

  • The product owner (PO) does not make an active risk assessment.
  • PO does not do a stakeholder analysis
  • Since the PO always expresses his wishes for the product, he does not keep an eye on the Scope of the project in the eye.
  • PO does not plan the data migration.
  • PO cannot assess the status and quality of the Product. He is mainly interested in the end result (e.g. not the architecture).
  • Project manager (PL) cannot coordinate with external partners (graphic designers, external programmers, UX designers, testers, etc.).
  • Without PL, there is no authority to make implementation decisions in case of disagreements.
  • Negotiations with external partners/interfaces can be handled by the PL.
  • The PL can control and do time recording and invoicing.
  • The PL can do time evaluation and target/actual comparisons.

User Stories

Are written in the form “As [role] I would like to …”

So it describes a wish from the point of view of the role, like the user, Accountant. The user stories that made it into the sprint, are assigned by the team itself.

Product Backlog

Is like a long to-do list. It contains the user stories. The problem with the User Stories is that there are so many. Thereby the whole context is lost. A workaround is to have a higher abstraction. This is called either Use Case or Epic.

Sprint

Are defined time slots in the length of 1 - 4 weeks. If a user story is not finished, it is definitely moved to the next sprint.

Scrum Processes

Sprint Planning

During the sprint, the user stories remain in the current sprint. New user stories are only recorded in the backlog, but not pushed into the current sprint. Of course, they can already be assigned to later sprints.

Daily Standup Meeting

  • Are max. 15-minute meetings.
  • Everyone speaks for max. 2 minutes.
  • Agenda: What done and what next? Are there any difficulties?
  • No discussion of problems, just “report”. The discussion then takes place bilaterally after the meeting.

Sprint Review

  • Is at the end of each sprint.
  • Agenda items: Demo for customer or product owner.
  • Everything is approved by the product owner.
  • The team calculates the speed.

Sprint Retrospective

  • Focus on the process, not technology
  • What went well? Where are there problems in the process? Improvements?

Roles

  • product owner
  • Team
  • Scrum Master

Product Owner

  • Can be the customer, customer proxy or a “Subject Matter Expert”.
  • Is always clearly on the “customer wants” side. So he has a Conflict of Interest if he is also the PL or one of the developers.
  • There is always exactly one product owner.
  • The Product Owner is best sitting in the same office.

Team

  • The developers are in the team.
  • In addition to development, they also have to estimate effort, test, do UX design and architecture
  • Along the way they help the product owner write the user stories, backlog Management, story mapping and the like.

Scrum Master

  • A scrum master is not a project manager.
  • Help multiple teams with problems in the Scrum process.

The estimation game

It is important that developers are allowed to estimate without external pressure. The customer then chooses the user stories until the sprint is filled.

Types of Backlog items

Backlog packages can be categorized. The following is a good example:

  • Features - and as a subcategory Use-Case, User Stories, Free-form Text
  • Defects (Bug)
  • Technical Work (Chores)
  • Knowledge Acquisition

Definition of Done

What does it mean when the developer says it is done?

  • Code compiled
  • Unit test throwing no errors
  • No more TODO in code
  • Metrics give green light
  • Code review done
  • Customer is happy with the result

Advantages of Scrum:

  • Iterative approach: Sprints (2 or 3 weeks) with incremental delivery and feedback
  • User Stories with acceptance criteria (good work packages)
  • The system with Product Backlog, Sprint Backlog and Backlog Management
  • Sprint planning
  • Sprint reviews, sprint retrospectives
  • Roles/responsibilities of the Product Owner (PO) and the Scrum Master
  • Daily Standup
  • The concept of Team Speed (“17 Story Points per week”)
  • Self-reliant, polyvalent teams
  • Developers value - customer prioritizes
  • Definition of Done (with inclusion of test code and testers).

Disadvantages of Scrum:

  • No End of Elaboration checkpoint (as in Unified Process).
  • No second, higher level of abstraction to user stories in the backlog
  • Additional role of project manager, for everything that the product owner and development team do not cover.
  • No requirements other than the user stories
  • No planned architecture
  • No project plan
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