Friday, May 9, 2008

How to start Scrum in your orgnaization?

I met a group of people who were doing Scrum without really understanding the Scrum values. They had a backlog, were doing daily scrums, giving demos and were doing Sprint review meetings. Product people were not involved. The demos were internal; the backlog was created by an engineering manager, QA was not included in the scrum; database design was done in the waterfall way!

Can we say that this group is doing Scrum - no! Most of the times, people tend to read one or two articles on the internet and think that it's a cool new idea, lets try it out. I think it takes much more to implement Scrum. The person or group of people initiating Scrum in your organization must be detail oriented. He/she must read Agile Software Development with Scrum first. The person should understand what real scrum values are and what they must do and what they can skip. If the person doesn't have time to study scrum in detail, get a consultant for coaching.

Scrum is a big paradigm shift from waterfall. The organization implementing scrum should first recognize the problems with waterfall process and understand how scrum solves them.

I also think that the team implementing scrum needs to have certain maturity level. When we started scrum, we were already using unit testing heavily; we had continuous integration; we had coding standards in place; we were using confluence and making documents in confluence (wiki) instead of using word documents. We already had collective decision making in place. All these things helped us a lot when we started with Scrum. I think Scrum is much more powerful if used with commonly acknowledged engineering best practices. If your team is not using any of these best practices, its better if you start with these instead of jumping on to the scrum bandwagon.

No comments: