5 Essential Practices for a Scrum Project
These days Scrum has become a buzzword for the development industry. The term “Scrum” was first used in 1986 to describe “a new approach to commercial product development that would increase speed and flexibility”. Nowadays Scrum is a well-known Agile software development framework and its basics are defined in the Scrum Guide.
Scrum’s key principle is recognition that during product development, unpredicted challenges (e.g. customers can change their minds about what they need) can happen. That’s why Scrum focuses on maximizing the team’s ability to adapt quickly and respond to new requirements.
Here is a list of best practices for Scrum projects:
#1. Burn down charts
A burn down chart is a graphical representation of work left to do versus time. The outstanding work (or backlog) is often on the vertical axis, with time along the horizontal. It is useful for monitoring sprint status and predicting when all of the work will be completed.
#2. Planning poker
Planning poker is also known as a gamified technique for estimating – mostly used to estimate effort or relative size of development goals in software development.
In planning poker, members of the group make estimates by playing numbered cards face-down to the table, instead of speaking them aloud. The cards are revealed, and the estimates are then discussed. By hiding the figures in this way, the group can avoid the cognitive “bias of anchoring” where the first number spoken aloud sets a precedent for subsequent estimates.
#3. Return on Investment (ROI)
ROI is a performance measure used to evaluate the efficiency of an investment or to compare the efficiency of a number of different investments. ROI measures the amount of return on an investment relative to the investment’s cost. For Scrum projects, ROI values are useful to determine item priorities in a sprint.
#4. Sprint length
It’s not recommended to change the sprint length (in weeks). But according to the sprint retrospective meeting results, sprint week lengths may be changed if there are really important reasons.
#5. Daily meetings
Daily meetings should not be longer than 15 minutes. Scrum is an agile methodology so if other team members deal with problems that need to be discussed in detail, this should be discussed after the daily meeting. The stand-up style is best for such meeting as it helps to keep them short.