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What is Scrum?

Scrum is a framework that helps you organize complex work. It is based on lean thinking and empiricism. This means you minimize waste and make decisions based on what is known. Work is organized into Sprints. These are short learning cycles where the Scrum Team completes a set of tasks and/or goals.

It is intentionally a framework and not a method. This means teams have the freedom to use Scrum according to their own insights and for their specific situation. It does not mean you can change the basic design or ideas of Scrum. If you omit parts or do not follow Scrum’s rules, you hide problems and lose the benefits, making Scrum no longer useful.

History of Scrum

Scrum was conceived in the early 1990s by Jeff Sutherland and Ken Schwaber. The ideas for Scrum emerged during a project where they were looking for an efficient way to develop software.

They were inspired, among other things, by the article “The New New Product Development Game” which described the concept of a rugby approach. This led to the development of Scrum as a flexible, iterative framework for software development.

Scrum Alliance and

In 2001, Jeff Sutherland and Ken Schwaber co-founded the Scrum Alliance. Their goal was to promote the understanding and application of Scrum, mainly through training and certification. Later, in 2009, Ken Schwaber founded as a separate organization with a similar mission but a different approach.

Scrum Guide as a description of the framework

In 2010, both men jointly wrote the first Scrum Guide to help people around the world further understand Scrum. Since then, the guide has been updated several times. The major updates took place in:

  1. 2010 (February): The first official Scrum Guide.
  2. 2011 (July): An update with minor changes.
  3. 2011 (October): An update with minor changes.
  4. 2013 (July): A version with significant changes.
  5. 2016 (July): Further adjustments and refinements.
  6. 2017 (November): Minor updates and clarifications.
  7. 2020 (November): A significant update that made the guide shorter and less prescriptive.

Scrum today

Over the past decades, Scrum has evolved into a widely used framework for working Agile. It is now widely used in various sectors such as IT but also in other domains such as marketing, education and event management.

Some characteristics are iterative progress, empiricism and the emphasis on collaboration. It makes it a popular choice for projects where change occurs often and rapidly.

Other important aspects of today’s use of Scrum include:

Flexibility and adaptability

Scrum is very effective in environments where requirements are not fully known at the start of the project or where these requirements change rapidly due to market or technological developments.

Self-managing teams

Scrum Teams are self-managing and multidisciplinary, meaning members have different areas of expertise required to deliver the product from start to finish independently.

Iterative approach

Scrum promotes an iterative approach, where projects are divided into short cycles called Sprints, usually two to four weeks. At the end of each sprint, the Scrum Team delivers a working product.

Clear accountabilities and events

There are three accountabilities in Scrum: the Product Owner, Scrum Master and the Developers. Additionally there are various events such as the Daily Scrum, Sprint Planning, Sprint Review and Sprint Retrospective, which help guide and continuously improve the work.

Digital tools

With the rise of remote and hybrid working, digital tools such as Jira, Trello and Asana have become popular for managing Scrum projects.

Scrum Training and Certification

There is an increase in the offering of training and certifications for Scrum professionals. This reflects the growing demand for people skilled in Scrum principles and practices.

In summary

Scrum helps increase the effectiveness of Teams and produce products that better match user expectations. It also encourages constant feedback for improvement, which is very important in our rapidly changing world. Additionally it contributes to experiencing more job happiness as Teams work autonomously and independently.

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