I’m sitting here talking with Jane Newcomb, a firm believer in Agile Project Management, including the Scrum approach, to getting things done.
Jane works on product development for BabyCenter.com, the dominant Internet baby company.
I thought I’d share her perspective with you through a question and answer session.
Why do you use Agile Project Management with Scrum?
BabyCenter applies the Agile Scrum Methodology to our new product and software development because we found through trial and error (including trying the Waterfall methodology) that Scrum was the most efficient project/product management tool.
Talk about Agile Methology versus Waterfall Methodology?
At the core, Waterfall Methodology assumes all aspects of a project, all features, all the funtionality — it’s all completely mapped out upfront…and then four months later the finished product is rolled out to the business owners. The business owners don’t see any code or software until the entire feature/product is delivered.
And then it’s often not the deliverable that the business owners were expected.
Whereas Agile Methodoliges are more flexible and allows business owners to see working code rolled out every two to four weeks…that allows for change in direction, alterations based on business need changes, marketplace changes.
What’s An Agile Scrum?
The Agile Scrum represents executionof the Agile Methodology: it’s the daily huddle where team members come prepared to talk about what they worked on, what their obstacles are and what they’re working on for the next 24 hours.
It’s the daily check-in to allow business owners to understand what’s going on…and make adjustments as needed.
Do You Use Agile software development with Scrum?
Yes, we use an out of the box software tool called VersionOne.
What Is An Agile Scrum Master?
The role of the Scrum Master is to keep the team focused on the tasks and the stories that are part of whatever Sprint we are working on. It is their job to remove any obstacles and to help keep the team on track
What is an Agile Sprint?
A Sprint is the amount of time from start to finish that business owners agree to let the team work on the pre-defined set of requirements that were agreed upon prior to going into that Sprint.
How often do you use Agile Sprints?
The average Sprint lasts two to four weeks.
Did BabyCenter provide you Agile Scrum training?
I personally learned it on the go. But you can become a certified scrummaster through Agile training.
Thanks for sharing, Jane!