What is Scrum? What does it mean when someone says, we are following Scrum methodology?
Originally, the word Scrum is from the Rugby game and as per Wiki, it means “an ordered formation of players, used to restart play, in which the forwards of a team form up with arms interlocked and heads down, and push forward against a similar group from the opposing side. The ball is thrown into the scrum and the players try to gain possession of it by kicking it backwards towards their own side.”
Essentially the Scrum that we are talking about is a framework for managing Projects and teams in an Agile way of working which involves a Scrum Board, Sprints or iterations etc. (An iterative, time-boxed approach to implementing agile)
When someone says that they are following Scrum, it means they are following the below basic pieces of Scrum.
1. Daily Scrum or Stand-up: This generally, a 15 Mins time boxed event which Involves team members talking about the three basic questions for the benefit of whole team like, what did I accomplish, what is my next plan of action, any blockers or Impediments. This is not a Status update meeting but, the whole idea is to give the team members an information for their benefit, understanding and to shout out for help etc.
2. Scrum Board: It is said that a picture is worth thousand words. Well, there are no pretty pictures but, Cards denoting the work that’s being done and team members working on it, which is usually denoted by a picture of their chosen Avatar. For, example I can choose the character of a Batman or Joker as my Avatar.
3. Iterations or Sprints: Between 1 to 4 weeks. The expected time period for the start and finish of a task within a Project.
4. Relative Sizing: Of available work, typically in a Fibonacci Scale of 1,2,3,5,8,13,20 etc. Decided by voting of team members or an individual member.
5. Retrospective Meeting: Which involves the Scrum team get together and discussion of the results of Iteration – retrospectively. Helps a team to understand things like, what went well, what did not, things that Needs Improvement etc.
6. Writing User Stories: Goes up on the Cards that are displayed on the Scrum Board. The wording is typically, something that is easy to read and understand the task. As a, abcd efgh (Test Analyst, Business User / Owner),
I want to, abcd efgh..,
So that, abcd efgh.. followed a list of Acceptance Criteria.
7. The Scrum will have, Epics, User Stories, artifacts, Ceremonies and meetings like, the sprint planning meeting, Daily Scrum, sprint review meeting, and sprint retrospective meeting etc.
Much more can be said and written about Scrum, but I think this is enough for now.