Scrum Creates Efficient Process to Keep Clients Happy

Scrum, the most popular Agile Process according to Kenneth S. Rubin’s bestselling book on Amazon ‘Essential Scrum’, helps teams create a more efficient methodology through an iterative and incremental process. A major goal for any business is to not only satisfy the customer, but also keep them happy. By following these simple SCRUM guidelines, a team will always put a functioning, quality product in its customer’s hands after every sprint, therefore keeping them happy.

What is SCRUM?

SCRUM is structured under the principles of

  1. Planning
  2. Doing
  3. Checking
  4. Acting 

Scrum Agile Process Used at Easy Dynamicsand requires cycling through this process until the desired results are achieved. After each iteration of this cycle, the product will have incremented its value to the customer.

How Does Scrum Work?

The cycle provides powerful value to the customer because he/she can start using a functioning version of the product sooner rather than waiting for a full version later. After every sprint, the product will get better and better and increasingly satisfy the needs of the customer. In turn, the customer provides real-time, constructive feedback for the next iteration and points out errors in the current version that require immediate attention.

SCRUM has purposely incorporated a specific time for both product and team feedback:

  • Product feedback helps the team and the customer come to an agreement on what is needed for the next few sprints.
  • Team feedback allows for the group to smooth out any block they encountered during the sprint while providing a gateway for developing methods for efficiency improvement in the following sprints.

Scrum Example

It can also force your team to become better at estimation. If you are familiar with the process, you should know that you NEVER push back a sprint deadline. For example, let’s say a team is given the task of making a chair for a customer. If it cannot be finished in one sprint, it is better to give them the basic structure of it, building piece by piece. By doing so, the customer has the opportunity to test the current version by sitting on it. For the following iterations, you could add the back rests, arm rests, and height adjustment mechanisms, giving the customer a better version of the product each time. Using SCRUM to build this chair would give both parties a chance to discuss future adjustments in order to develop the optimal product. 

Scrum Iteration Process Adjusts Products Frequently at Easy Dynamics

Furthermore, all product backlog items in the current sprint are the items that the team committed to finish in the allotted time. Each of those items are estimated at the beginning of each sprint and then assigned a number according to how much effort the team believes it will require. When a team is newly formed, it’s normal to over- or under-estimate the effort needed for tasks. Every item not completed returns to the product backlog and switched onto the next sprint, and finally given a new estimation.

This ‘setback’ forces the team to perfect their estimations and only add items to the sprint they can complete in the allocated time. After a few sprints are over, the team can average the effort points and provide a decent estimate on how much work will be finished in the next sprint. The teams evolve after each sprint and become more effective and more efficient. In fact, this enables them to add increasing work within each one and improve their processes even more. By tracking its progress, a team can provide very accurate predictions, keeping the customer informed on what he/she will receive in the next few sprints. This valuable information helps the client to better plan ahead to strategically plan budgets or formulate marketing campaigns. 

SCRUM Tools

There are many tools available to help teams faciliate SCRUM into their organizations, such as Team Foundation Server (TFS) which is widely used in the technology industry. TFS helps teams organize and track their progress using a simple interface that integrates the basic SCRUM principles mentioned in this post. Beginners can find more information of TFS in a previous blog post, containing a simple tutorial with daily activity examples.

Why SCRUM?

I highly encourage organizations to test out SCRUM in their business guidelines to potentially increase efficiency. Initially, after adopting the principles, an organization may see some decreased productivity. But not to fret! Like any new procedure, it requires time for adjustment in the trial-and-error stage. Given the intial introduction period, it has been proven that positive results will develop shortly just after a few sprints. In fact, this 2010 study shows that SCRUM “made the development process more efficient.”  Definitely worth trying out! 

{{cta(‘2a9880c9-49c7-4e3f-82e3-f9dc70ff53eb’)}} to find out how we utilize SCRUM and Agile methodologies in our everyday client work to improve processes and be extremely efficient. 

Leave a Reply