The 2017 State of Scrum report has found that successful businesses of all shapes and sizes use Scrum. While IT and software development departments continue to be the primarily users of Agile and Scrum, it is increasingly being applied to other areas of the business.
It isn’t just IT and software development companies that are using it either, as 72 per cent of respondents were found to work in non-related industries. Finance and banking, education, government, and manufacturing are some of the industries that have integrated Scrum values and practices company-wide. Additionally, varied departments such as sales and marketing, finance and accounting, and human resources all reported running Scrum projects.
Compiled by the Scrum Alliance, the survey looked at how Agile and Scrum is working out for companies that employed it in 2016. More than 2,000 respondents from 76 countries participated in the 2016 survey, with 69 per cent working at companies with 500 or more employees.
89 per cent of Agile users said they use the Scrum approach and 86 per cent hold a daily Scrum meeting. When it came to a team’s quality of work, 83 per cent said Scrum was responsible for improving it to some extent.
When it came to selecting the most important outcome for Scrum projects, the majority of respondents once again chose delivering value to the customer, which also topped last year’s survey. Coming in second was the flexibility and responsiveness of Scrum in completing projects.
A challenging methodology
Scrum is an Agile framework designed to aid in completing complex projects. Instead of relying on a more linear approach to development, the aim is for team members to combine efforts to continuously advance the entire project and share information through frequent meetings.
Benefits of Agile include faster feedback, ability to adapt to change, early identification of problems, flexible prioritisation, and team purpose. For those reasons, Agile and Scrum presents an opportunity for companies to work more productively and efficiently across all industries and roles.
However, the benefits are only made possible from a successful implementation. Over half the respondents in the State of Scrum report said that their business is having difficulty with Agility-based project management and adapting Scrum to their culture.
Over 40 per cent also voiced challenges in aligning projects and clearly defining metrics, as well as transitioning from the Waterfall model. Two-thirds of participants report that Scrum created some tension in the workplace after it was implemented, and 70 per cent blamed the tension on company management and its adherence to top-down, command-and-control approaches.
The challenge for Agile and Scrum is that many business leaders view it as “just an IT thing”. But with 98 per cent of respondents planning to use Scrum moving forward, these same leaders will have to find a way to co-exist with it.
For many leaders, it may be a case of translating the ideas of Scrum into business terms that they understand, such as boosting the bottom line and providing a better experience for customers. In order for a business to stand out in today’s competitive marketplace, an Agile business structure will not only become invaluable, but also a necessity.
The value of education
The majority of survey respondents (82%) said certification helped their Scrum practice. This result highlights the value of certification such as iSQI Scrum Master Pro in Agile-based work environments.
By immersing participants in the fundamental principles of Scrum, the iSQI Scrum Master Pro certification enables them to implement best practice and avoid falling into bad habits that can significantly impact project delivery, quality and cost. It also shows how to use the Scrum methodology as a way of managing issues and roadblocks in the workplace.
To learn how you can build and certify your skills as a Scrum Master, visit our iSQI Scrum Master Pro Certification page.