Defining the requirements for a software solution can turn into a big challenge for three reasons:
- It is difficult to define them at the necessary level of detail
- Studies have found that they can change by 2% per month, which means that the time span between requirements’ definition and implementation must not be years apart
- The use of technology involves risks that only show up during the project
To try to eliminate these disadvantages and get certain flexibility in your development process, Agile methods are the path to reach a productive and efficient approach in delivering projects within budget.
What is Scrum?
Scrum is one of the different frameworks for implementing the Agile methodology. With this procedure, the project is divided into timeslots (sprints) and the team focuses on the defined tasks with the result to have a working prototype by the end of each sprint.
Therefore, when separating the project into different phases, the development team is able to involve the customer in every iteration. This procedure makes it possible to adapt the development to the client feedback, to make corrections during the process, and to test the different parts of the software independently.
Some characteristics of Scrum
There are different roles in one team:
- Product Owner, in charge of designing the releases of every sprint
- Scrum Master, in charge of removing impediments so the team can work productively
- Developers, in charge of creating the projects
Daily 15 minutes meeting with the team. Agile’s vision recommends to all the members to stand-up during the conversation.
Sprints of 2 weeks to 1 month: the result of each sprint should be working software, which can be deployed on production and used by the end-users.
In a sprint planning meeting, the scope is set, which is the detailed work required that the development team identifies (features on the backlog) and the team commits to the sprint goal.
The first meeting at the end of the sprint is the sprint review meeting. The team analyses the completed work and presents it to the stakeholder.
How to succeed
To be successful, the team and the customer need to commit to two core values: trust and discipline.
As a customer, you have to trust the contractor. There is no contract to deliver the required function for a fixed price and a fixed date. Instead, the customer sees very early on whether the software meets the desired requirements, can already use the available parts productively, and can influence further development. So he or she can make changes to the priorities and introduce new features.
But Scrum also demands a high level of discipline from the team. At the beginning of a sprint, the team has to commit to the scope and do everything to reach the sprint goal.
Scrum at isolutions
At isolutions, Developers and Project Leaders work with both Waterfall and Agile methodologies. “It depends on the customer and final project’s adaptation, but we strongly believe in Scrum’s vision”, says Darío Delgado (Software Developer at isolutions Barcelona).
“We use Azure DevOps to track the sprints and, for the daily 15 minutes stand-up meeting, we connect with the Swiss team via Microsoft Teams”.