Agile Thinking

Changes to the Scrum Guide You Should Know

As business evolves, methodologies evolve with it. The Scrum Guide is akin to a business Bible in many agile circles, but unlike the Bible, the Scrum Guide gets occasional updates. In a Q&A at InfoQ, Ben Linders interviews scrum co-creators Ken Schwaber and Jeff Sutherland about the changes to the newest version of the Scrum Guide.

Beyond Revelation

Here are the biggest updates to the Scrum Guide, straight from Schwaber:

There are five main changes to The Scrum Guide: a greater definition on the uses of Scrum, a more refined definition of the role of Scrum Master, clearer understanding of the Daily Scrum as a vehicle for inspection and adaption to ensure progress toward the Sprint Goal, the establishment of a maximum length to time boxing and updating the Sprint Backlog to include feedback from the Sprint Retrospectives. That said, all of these changes serve the same purpose, which is to clear up misconceptions about Scrum.

These changes, inspired by discussion with the larger scrum community, aim to reemphasize that scrum is a process of continuous improvement.

When asked about the biggest continuing misconceptions of agile, Sutherland cites the teams who think it is okay to finish their sprint without delivering a shippable product increment. (It’s not okay.) Schwaber meanwhile highlights how too many people still think agile is only for software development. He also reminds people that scrum is only a framework, and it cannot magically take complex work and make it easy to complete. Scrum originates from lean thinking and empirical process control, so its emphasis is on augmenting decision-making with more inspection and adaptation.

For more of Schwaber and Sutherland’s insights into scrum and agile, you can view the full interview here:

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