Agile Developments Influence on System Analysis

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    The Team in Scrum is a cross-functional work group that includes people with specialized skills such as programming, analysis, development, quality control, testing, database design and documentation. Successful Scrum Team members are predisposed to exhibit a high quality work ethic and tend to be self-motivated. All Team members are expected to contribute to all phases of the sprint even if it requires learning new skills. There are not titles for the Team membership and there is no exception to this rule.

    Teams tend to have seven members, plus or minus two. With fewer than five Team members, the Team is predisposed to fewer interactions and thus becomes less productive. A diminishing Team size may also be detrimental when it comes to the necessary skill sets required during part of a sprint, and may not be able to deliver by the required release date. Large Team sizes with more than nine people also suffer from productivity losses. These Teams will tend to generate too much complexity for the empirical process to function efficiently.

    In order to examine the process involved with the Scrum methodology, four artefacts are required:


Sprint Backlog


Burndown Chart


Impediment Backlog

    The product backlog is a simple listing of all the features requested to make up the software. It can also be thought of as a wish list for the particular project. Any Team member can add a feature to the product backlog, but the Product Owner will decide what order the features will be implemented in.

    “Requirements are emergent, meaning we do not and cannot know up front every detail about what we want in a product. Therefore the product backlog is a living document and requires constant grooming to keep it current and useful.” (Hundermark, 2009) Throughout the development cycle of the project, new requirements will be added and some requirements may be reduced or redacted.

    The product backlog is a very low tech solution. The story board consists of a large white board or piece of cork board. The individual stories (Tasks) are physically written on 6” X 4” index cards and either taped or pinned to the product backlog board. In Ron Jeffries’ 2005 article he describes how Card, Conversation and Confirmation are used to work with stories.

    The next step involves taking the stories that will be implemented during the sprint from the product backlog and placing them on the sprint or release backlog. These represent the tasks that the Team will focus on during the current sprint. Most projects will have between four and twelve sprints per release.

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