6 Actionable Tips to Improve Sprint planning in Scrum

25 Nov, 2015
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Scrum is an agile software development framework. Product development, using Scrum, occurs in small pieces, with each piece building upon previously created pieces. Building products one small piece at a time encourages creativity and enables teams to respond to feedback and change, to build exactly and only what is needed.

The best part of Scrum is that it offers convenient scalability as and when required. None of the traditional software engineering team roles are upheld with Scrum. Instead, the team gets together and each member decides to perform a task during each sprint session and then push forward to complete it together, thus building a rapport among each other. If you are the product owner, you will be the key stakeholder and the key user in the project.

In fact for ISVs who wish to adopt Agile practices, the different approaches, methods, terms, and other things that are associated with it, makes Agile software development sound a bit baffling, than it really needs to be. However, on the contrary, Scrum in software development is an effective way of managing the project. To begin with, you need to understand the underlying values and principles of Agile development. It’s always good to have a thorough understanding of how and why Scrum works for software development teams.

But how does Scrum work?

The Scrum methodology is implemented through a series of Sprints. To put it in simple words, a Sprint is an integral part of any Scrum based process, without which the methodology loses importance. Effective Sprint planning is vital for any Scrum project’s success. However, many consider it to be hardest part in Scrum. In this ebook, we have shared few actionable tips which will guide you and your team to improve Sprint planning in Scrum.

A scrum master bears a pivotal role, as a focused facilitator, a coach and a servant leader in an Agile development team. He/she is responsible for delivering maximum value to the customer by ensuring that all the team members are equipped with the resources they need, have access to an efficient communication system and are shielded from unnecessary distractions or hurdles. Scrum masters are responsible for monitoring progression towards goals through daily stand-ups and frequent “check-ins”.

Sprint planning meeting

Following are some of the critical stages in implementing Sprint:

  • The product owner prioritizes the backlog list.
  • All the stakeholders and the development team meet to determine which backlog can be realized in the next Sprint and what would be the deliverables.
  • The top items of the priority list are selected by the development team for realization.
  • The team obtains as much detail as necessary about the high priority from all the stake holders.
  • The development team should only select that amount of work that they can commit to completion.
  • Team establishes the Sprint goal.
  • Certain backlog items may be broken down and selected as Sprint backlog.
  • No new items may be added to the Sprint until the next Sprint.

Proper Sprint planning is essential for any Scrum team to ensure that the product launch will be on time. The Sprint team should be really motivated and committed towards the planning effort and to complete the backlog.

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Anirban Guha
Software Engineer at coMakeIT

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