Scrum is one of the most widely used agile product development frameworks. Indeed, 68 percent of agile teams report using some version of the Scrum methodology, implying that thousands of teams worldwide perform the Scrum rituals on a weekly basis.
Agile development requires meetings or “ceremonies.” However, they are just one of many critical components of the scrum methodology and should not perform standalone. While it may be easy to introduce some ceremonies to a waterfall project and label it “agile,” it will not help the waterfall process.
Several of these ceremonies derives from the scrum, an iterative, time-boxed method to adopting agile. The ideas behind these ceremonies apply to various agile methodologies such as kanban or lean. A “sprint” is a scrum-specific word that refers to a fixed-length event lasting one month or less used to establish consistency. Other types of agile development use the more general word “iteration” to refer to a time-boxed work cycle. Ceremonies usually vary a bit following the sprint’s or iteration’s timeframe.
Consider each of the agile ceremonies to understand better how they strengthen the team and promote agile development.
Sprint Planning in Scrum methodology
Participants: Participants include the development team, the scrum master, and the product owner.
when: Right at the start of a sprint.
Iteration duration: Typically, up to two hours each week. For instance, a two-week sprint begins with a four-hour strategy meeting.
Agile Methodology: Scrum as Kanban teams plan, but they do not operate on a set iteration schedule with formalized sprint planning.
Objective: Sprint planning lays the groundwork for the whole team’s success during the sprint. The product owner will enter the meeting with a prioritized product backlog. They consult with the development team on each issue, and the group as a whole assesses the work required. The development team will next create a sprint forecast detailing the work completed from the product backlog during the current sprint. This volume of work is in the sprint backlog.
Sprint planning should emphasize on following points in order to deliver the best results:
- Use the sprint planning meeting to discuss the finer points of the work that has to be completed.
- Encourage team members to create task sketches for any stories, issues, and tasks introduced throughout the sprint.
- Encourage debate and reach an agreement on a course of action.
- Effective planning substantially improves the team’s likelihood of achieving the sprint’s objectives.
Daily Stand-up meeting
Members: Product owner, Scrum Master, and Development team
When: Once a day, usually first thing in the morning.
Time limit: 15 minutes maximum. Do not reserve a conference room and perform the stand-up while seated. Standing up makes it easier to keep the meeting on track!
Agile Framework: Scrum and Kanban.
Objective: The purpose of stand-up is to rapidly brief everybody on what’s going on in the team. It isn’t a status meeting in the traditional sense. The tone should be lighthearted and entertaining while yet being informative. Ask each member of your team to respond to the following questions:
- What did I do the day before?
- What am I going to work on today?
- Is there anything obstructing my progress?
When you describe what you did yesterday in front of your peers, there’s an underlying sense of responsibility. No one wishes to be a member of the team who does the same thing over and over again and never advances.
To keep everyone on track, some teams utilize timers. Others pass the ball around the squad to ensure that everyone is paying attention. To bridge the gap between dispersed teams, many utilize videoconferencing or group chat. Your group is different. Your stand-up routine should be as well!
Review of iterations
Participants Required: Team of developers, scrum master, and product owner
Optional: Partners in the project
When: At the conclusion of a sprint or achievement of a milestone.
Duration: Typically, iterations last 60 minutes each week—for example, a two-hour review after a two-week sprint.
Purpose: Iteration review is a moment to highlight the team’s efforts. They may take the shape of an informal gathering or a more formal meeting structure. This is an opportunity for the team to recognize their achievements, showcase work completed during the iteration, and get quick feedback from project stakeholders. Remember that work must be entirely verifiable and satisfy the team’s quality standards to be considered complete and ready for presentation during the review.
Participants: Participants include members of the development team, the scrum master, and the product owner.
When: Upon completion of an iteration.
Duration: Typically 45 minutes each iteration. For example, a 90-minute retrospective following a two-week sprint.
Objective: Agile’s purpose is to get fast feedback to improve the product and development culture. Retrospectives assist the team in determining what worked and what did not.
Retrospects are not just a forum for passive-aggressive complaints. Utilize retrospectives to ascertain what is working and allowing the team to continue focusing on those areas. Additionally, determine what is not working and utilize the opportunity to create innovative alternatives and an action plan. Continuous improvement is the core of an agile team, and retrospectives are a critical component of that.
Even if things are going well for the team as a whole, you should continue to do retrospectives. Retrospectives offer continuous advice to the team to ensure that things continue to run smoothly.
Agility in a team is founded on perfect engineering techniques, a tactical and strategic approach to change, and effective team communication. Agile ceremonies promote team communication.
Scrum methodology Conclusion
Scrum’s roles, events, artifacts, and rules are an essential part of the process. If just a fraction of the Scrum methodology is used, the outcome is not Scrum. Scrum must be applied entirely and is most effective when combined with other methods, approaches, and practices.