Demystifying Scrum- An Agile Process

To put it in simple words, Scrum is one of the several agile processes available for software development. Scrum is a framework, as opposed to being a process or a methodology. Like any other member of the agile family, Scrum is built on the core principle of providing an iterative and incremental framework for effective software development. Though originally designed for software development, Scrum is equally effective in software maintenance and overall project management.Scrum is different from other agile methodologies as it offers unique empirical process control. It is one of the few agile approaches that rely entirely on facts and real-world statistics rather than on forecasts, guesses and gut feelings.

Work Breakdown in Scrum

Scrum divides a project into sprints, which are succinct word cadences. Sprints are critical in terms of determining the Work Breakdown Structure of a project and determining the overall release plan. Sprints are generally one to three weeks in duration, depending on the complexity involved.

There’s a stakeholder review at the end of each sprint which determines the future course of action for the project and subsequent sprints. Since there’s a regular assessment of the completed work in a project every couple of weeks, it mitigates the risk involved in the project.

Scrum Roles

A crucial component of Scrum is to assign specific roles to project team members. Scrum has three major roles – Product Owner, ScrumMaster and Team Member. These are notoriously known as Pig roles as they represent the people who’ll be performing the actual dirty work on the project.

Product Owner

This role represents the people who are responsible for defining the vision of the product and communicating it to the development team. In a literal sense, they represent the voice of the customer. It is undoubtedly the role with the most crucial responsibilities. If the project goes well, the product owner gets a pat on the back. If a project doesn’t go well, a kick on the butt is not a distant possibility either.


Also known as the Facilitator, this role is all about removing impediments that are obstructing the team from achieving its sprint goals. The ScrumMaster ensures that rules are met and acts as a mediator between the Product Owner and Team Members.

Team Members

As the name itself suggests, these are the members of the team which actually does the software development work. The team members deliver the product and are responsible for the success of each sprint. It is recommended that a team be composed of 5-9 resources with varied cross-functional skills as per the project’s requirements.


Scrum can be practiced daily (called Daily Scrum) or as per a well defined periodicity for sprints. Irrespective of the chosen model, planning, review and retrospective meetings are a crucial part of Scrum.


Scrum is the perfect agile approach for scenarios which demand rapid reaction to changes in requirements/scope. Each project is special and unique and that’s the underlying philosophy on which Scrum is built.