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The Benefits of Using the Scrum Method To Develop Your Custom Software 

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The Scrum agile method may be offered to you in the development of your technology solution. Want to know how this management method works when developing a custom program or application? The article below presents four points to help you better understand how Scrum interacts in the development of a program or application.

1) Scrum’s three pillars

Scrum was designed to fulfill the 3 primary requirements that ensure a product is developed by the book. Without getting too deep into Scrum theory, it is interesting to look at the properties on which this methodology is based, and which confirm that the customer is as the heart of the project. 

Transparency: This property is integral to the relationships between everyone involved in a Scrum. The goal is to share facts as they are between all team members; the good and the bad.  It is essential for maintaining a relationship of trust with your partner. When you’re a company that pays a good deal for external expertise, it makes sense that you would want your dedicated partner to update you with all the information you need throughout a project.

Inspection: When your company is in the process of acquiring a custom application or software, it is totally normal to wonder about the scope of the developing project. Were our needs really understood by the technology partner? Did we forget an important functionality? Does the product really match the needs and reality of our company? All of these questions are natural, and come up in any optimal project. However, inspection gives you access throughout the development of the software/application, and can provide reassurance by allowing you to make changes as the project goes along. Inspection allows for collaboration, which facilitates delivery of a custom product.

Adaptation: Adaptation in a development context consists in enabling a custom development project (software, app, e-commerce site) to evolve over time. Your company will be able to add additional functionality later on, and easily integrate the changes to the initial project thanks to the adaptation of the Scrum
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2) The sprint cycle

Scrum uses an iterative and incremental approach to optimize predictability and control risks. During each of the iterations, or “sprints,” each of these steps is planned for production.

The plan: This step consists in working with you to create a list of the functionalities to develop. In Scrum, the project’s development is evaluated based on the level of complexity rather than the number of hours required; the Scrum team will use points to determine the scope of the sprint based on your priorities, their level of complexity and the budget you have allotted.

The development: Starting with day one of the sprint, the Scrum team meets every day to review the functionalities to be developed, but also to cover any obstacles, and to discuss with everyone together how to apply the best solution. Customers are invited to these meetings, which keeps them in the loop about how the project is progressing.

The tests: Each functionality is tested before it is delivered to you, because they must be operational once they are used in your organization.

The demo: This fourth and last step is when you receive a presentation of all of the stories that will be delivered to you, by the developer team. This is the time for you to ask all of your questions about what was developed, give your feedback and share your impressions. The Scrum team is there to guide you and make adjustments based on your vision and needs.

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3) The Scrum team and each person’s responsibilities

We all have the same goal: to deliver a sprint that meets your requirements. 

The Scrum team’s composition does not change, which helps ensure stability in the project’s direction and general understanding.

The product owner: This is your representative. They are there to make sure your software-application will match your vision and requirements. Through their role overseeing cost, schedule and planned sprints, they make sure the project is well coordinated within the developer team.

The Scrum master: This is the person who coordinates the sprints in the developer team. They oversee the Scrum and ensure that the team is operational and productive, with the goal of meeting the deadlines set by the product owner.

Development team: Made up of three to nine people. Everyone involved in developing the software works on specific tasks following directions from the Scrum master.

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4) The tools used with Scrum

Since we prefer to invest our time in developing operational software rather than writing exhaustive documentation, Scrum project management develops software/applications using these two primary references:

Product backlog: Written by the product owner, the product backlog contains all of the stories, with the goal of producing software that meets all of the customer’s needs.

Sprint backlog: This backlog contains all of the stories that will be developed in the planned sprint. These stories are selected from the product backlog and determined based on your priorities and their level of complexity to develop.

As a service company offering technological solutions for our customers, we want to provide the best methods that will allow us to develop a product for your company and contribute to the success of your investment. We are convinced that the Scrum method will allow us to work well together and make your investment a success.

Article written by:

Gabriel, Project Manager

For nearly 20 years, I have guided companies through their digitization process as a web developer and project manager. As an Agile coach with Openmind, I oversee the projects entrusted to us, ensuring the teams implement and comply with the Scrum method. In all of the projects I work on, I am always blown away by the positive impact the tools have on my customers’ business processes.

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