SCRUM and Software Engineering Process Group (SEPG) Mohan Bang [email_address]
Scrum Stands for SCRUM is not an acronym. Its proper spelling is Scrum (not all caps). It’s a rugby term used when members of the rugby teams form a circle to get the ball back into play. Think of Scrum as a way to get software delivery teams unstuck and moving again.
Scrum Scrum divides a project into sprints (aka iterations) of 30 days. Before you begin a sprint you define the functionality required for that sprint and leave the team to deliver it. But every day the team holds a short (10 – 15 minute) meeting, called a scrum where the team runs through what it will achieve in the next day. Some of the questions asked in the scrum meetings are: What did you do since the last scrum meetings? Do you have any obstacles? What will you do before next meeting? This is very similar to stand-up meetings in XP and iterative development process in RUP (Rational Unified Process). RUP has 4 phases in the following order Inception, Elaboration, Construction, and Transition. Agile (i.e. lightweight) software development process is gaining popularity and momentum across organizations. Several methodologies like XP, RUP, Scrum, FDD, TDD etc fit under this agile development methodology banner. All these methodologies share many characteristics like iterative and incremental development, stand-up meetings to improve communication, automatic build, testing and continuous integration etc.
Many factors are essential if process improvement initiatives are to succeed in an organization.
One success factor, which is also a key practice of the Organization Process Focus KPA (Key Process Area) of CMM (Capability Maturity Model) level 3, is the formation of a core group that takes responsibility for coordinating the process activities in the organization. This core group is commonly called the SEPG.
In IT companies, these SEPG will consist of quality professionals whose sole duty is monitoring and improving the processes for improving the Q&P in the organization. It includes approximately 1.5% of the company’s employees.
Identify a suitable standard process for project execution
Tailor the standard process to meet project requirements
Identify the methods, tools, templates, and standards to be used
Identify risks and define plans to mitigate them
Define project milestones
Create a schedule for the project
Define a quality plan
Define a measurement plan for the project
Define a training plan for the project
Define project-tracking procedures
Define assumptions made in project planning
Perform group review for the project plan and schedule
Obtain authorization from senior management
Define and review the CM plan
Provide orientation to the project team.
The participants in this phase are the Project coordinator and Technical Architect (are responsible for developing the project plan), the onsite client, an SEPG representative, and the project manager for the project.