Scrum is a very common framework for project management. It is often used in IT projects. Its main advantages are efficiency in team management, control over the entire process and the possibility of constant monitoring of the progress. The question is, is it an ideal method of project management? Well, that’s a good question.
Scrum has many followers, and I’m one of them. However, you can not be indifferent to the negative rumors you might have encountered about this framework. Recently, I have met with a colleague that has a very disapproving opinion on Scrum. This motivated me to write this article.
This article is addressed to all project managers who often face the dilemma of choosing the right project management methodology. In the case of Scrum, I appreciate it for the possibility of a relatively quick start of the project, ease of building a team and its transparent process. However, I think that the effectiveness of the Scrum methodology is strongly influenced by people who develop the project. Their understanding of the product’s needs, their knowledge and their commitment are the fundamentals for a project’s success.
Before I go into a detailed analysis of the pros and cons of Scrum, I want to remind you about the basic division of roles in this type of projects:
1. Scrum Master – runs and supervises the team and maintains the appropriate motivation of all project members.
2. Product Owner – a person representing the client side.
3. Development team – a team responsible for product delivery.
Ok, we are done with the theoretical part. Now let’s talk facts. I prepared a list for and against the Scrum methodology. I’ve outlined all the advantages and disadvantages of this solution, which should help you make the best decision for your project.
1. Scrum is a framework that can help you manage your project more effectively and make better use of time and budget.
2. Scrum is a guarantee of transparency of all stages of the project.
3. It is estimated that Scrum is currently the most effective method of managing IT projects.
4. One of the principles of Scrum is to focus on minimizing errors. Thanks to this approach (for example, running numerous tests) you can be sure that the project is maintained at the highest quality level.
5. The implementation of the project using Scrum is divided into so-called sprints. During their lifetime, the team focuses on the development of strictly defined functionalities. Sprints are a great way to achieve progressive and sustainable product development.
6. Scrum is a very flexible methodology. If the customer wants to make any changes or extend the product with new functionalities, usually there are no problems with that. This kind of elasticity is ensured by sprints.
7. Scrum provides task prioritization. First, you develop the ticks of the main “to do”, and then you also implement a “backlog task” list. This last one includes tasks that can be described as “nice to have”. In this way, you can be sure that the team is currently working on the most important functionalities.
8. Scrum is also an effective methodology from the client’s perspective. Thanks to daily meetings, the client can be up to date with all current work. His feedback is also taken into account.
9. Daily meetings help to identify emerging threats and problems that can be quickly solved.
10. The Scrum methodology is affordable for the budget. You can regularly control and estimate all expenses.
1. The success of your project may be at risk if a team member is not involved or does his job slower than the others.
2. The Scrum Master role is critical. If he does not perform his duties duly, it may lead to delays in the project.
3. Scrum is ideal for 3-9-person teams. In the case of larger teams, there may be problems in management efficiency.
4. Daily meetings can be frustrating for team members who present the results of their work.
5. The unexpected departure of one team member may harm the progress of the entire project.
6. The date of product delivery and the sprint time limit shall not apply to Scrum.
Go with Scrum or not?
Scrum is not an ideal methodology for all kinds of projects, but I still recommend you use it. Especially when you are responsible for IT projects. If you plan all the work thoroughly, you have a greater chance to achieve high efficiency and be successful.
Consider all the pros and cons that I have mentioned here and think about whether your project meets the criteria that will allow the effective development of the project using Scrum. If you correctly identify your needs and possible threats, I am convinced that Scrum will help you achieve success.