Understanding Scrum Review

Scrum is the framework which comes under the Agile umbrella and is very helpful in the software development process if implemented correctly. Scrum gives the flexibility for change request and constant feedback for the product which the Scrum team is working on.

TheAgile Manifesto helps the team to set their goals for a better way of work and keep them on the same page. This manifesto talks about four points which are equally important in the implementation of Agility in software development or even in any generic cases. These points don't especially revolve around software development but also apply to other industries as well. According to the Agile Manifesto,

  • Individual and interactions over processes and tools.
  • Working Software over comprehensive documentation.
  • Collaboration with customers over contract negotiation.
  • Respond to change over following a plan.

The focus here is on the product and how to make the whole process more effective and easier for both the parties (Product Manager/Owner and Team who are working on it). Feedback plays the most important role here in this activity because the focus is on delivering potentially shippable product at the end of ‘almost’ each sprint. It means that at end of ‘almost’ each sprint team has to deliver coded, reviewed, tested product to the stakeholders so they can -

  1. Informally, monitor the progress of the product
  2. Provide feedback or if any changes are required early rather than providing them at the end of development.

Sprint Review is one of a few but is the most important event in the Scrum framework. According to the Scrum Guide, a Sprint Review/Demo meeting is held at the end of the sprint to inspect the Increment. The team demonstrates the increment with focus on the sprint goal according to the definition of done. The Product Owner reviews and accepts the delivered Increment.

The purpose the sprint review is to inspect the incremented product which has been created in the sprint and update and adapt the product backlog if required.

This meeting is not a formal meeting so no power-points are welcome intentionally, and no more than two hours for the preparation for the meeting are allowed. It is not a status meeting and the presentation of the incremented product is intended to elicit feedback and foster collaboration.

The team should be focused on getting answers to the following questions,

  1. What did the stakeholder like or dislike and what don’t they seem to understand?
  2. If there is anything the stakeholder wants to change/delete and what new things/requirements do they think would be good/must to have in the product?
  3. Have their priorities changed?

The following are some short ways of understanding it,

  • Who – Scrum Master, Scrum Team, Product Owner and other Stakeholders
  • When – At the end of each sprint (before the sprint retrospective)
  • Time-Box – Max 4 hours for a one-month Sprint
  • Input – Product increment, changes to the product backlog during the sprint if any.
  • Outcome – Updated product backlog, a better understanding of the product, new ideas if any, release product (if required)

During the Sprint Review, team and stakeholders also collaborate on what to do next, so this meeting also provides valuable inputs to subsequent sprint planning.

To summarize the above, Scrum review is an important event that takes place in the Scrum framework and helps the Stakeholder to understand what has been done and also helps the team in understanding the user expectation and changes if any.

Happy Learning!!