How to Improvise SCRUM for Corporate IT Projects
- 10 November, 2008 12:31
Wouldn’t it be better to have 90 percent of the features and provide a solution that works?
In contrast to the waterfall approach, SCRUM enables the project manager to quickly deal with unforeseen issues by adjusting the plan, resulting in a high-quality, on-schedule solution.
Rather than creating a detailed plan for design, development and testing for the entire project up-front; using SCRUM, the team creates a high-level plan which outlines which features/changes will likely fit into each sprint in order to meet the deadline. Development begins as soon as possible, enabling the team to identify issues early and adjust the plan accordingly.
SCRUM significantly increases the likelihood of an on-schedule solution — possibly at the cost of reduced scope. If unforeseen issues arise, the last few sprints may not be completed. It is very important that you discuss this with the project sponsor in advance and ensure that they feel that quality and deadline are more important than some of the low priority features/changes.
SCRUM provides a higher-quality solution than the waterfall approach by ensuring testing is completed throughout each sprint. Defects are always given top priority ahead of new changes/features. This is quite different from the typical waterfall approach where the majority of testing is completed at the end, getting squeezed when development exceeds the timelines.
In my experience, performing testing throughout the sprint not only increases quality, but can also decrease the overall timeline of the project. With the waterfall approach, during the testing phase, developers may be sitting idly waiting for defects; whereas SCRUM ensures that all of your resources are equally busy throughout the length of the project, thereby shortening the overall timeline.
Another way that SCRUM produces a higher-quality solution is through incorporating stakeholder feedback. You can be assured that the solution will meet the stakeholders’ requirements because there are demonstrations at the end of each sprint, and increased communication between stakeholders and developers throughout the project.
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