What Scaled Professional Scrum Is Not
Scaled Professional Scrum is not about introducing or transitioning to Scrum as an organisation. This is an Agile/Scrum transformation and a separate challenge in itself.
It is not about using Scrum with many teams in the same organisation to develop multiple products. This is “lots of Scrum”.
What Scaled Professional Scrum Is
Scaled Professional Scrum is about helping 3+ Scrum teams work together effectively and efficiently to develop a single product. Most commonly this will be a software product.
Scaled Professional Scrum and the Nexus framework are designed to help us deal with the challenges that come with developing software with large numbers of people and multiple teams.
The Nexus Framework
At the core of Scaled Professional Scrum is the Nexus. The Nexus is a lightweight framework to help us organise and coordinate our efforts in large scale software development. The Nexus is described by Ken Schwaber as “the exoskeleton of scaled Scrum”.
As with the Scrum framework, the Nexus framework provides guidance about how to plan and review our work and how to cultivate a culture of continuous improvement. It does this by guiding us on how and when to inspect and adapt using short Sprints with regular refinement, planning, reviews and retrospectives that result in an integrated Increment of potentially releasable software.
Most importantly it guides us on how to coordinate and manage the dependencies inherent in building a complex software product with multiple teams.
The Good News
The good news about Scaled Professional Scrum and Nexus is that it is still Scrum as you already know it. You still do all the good things you did with Scrum in the past.
It extends Scrum with a selection of familiar new events, artefacts and a range of 40+ good practices to assist you in your scaling efforts and give you a greater chance of success.
Nexus Is A Framework
As with the Scrum framework, the Nexus framework does not seek to answer every question you will have, and solve every problem you will encounter when scaling your development efforts on a product with multiple Development Teams.
Scrum recognises that the challenges faced by each organisation seeking to develop software are different and unique. As such any methodology that seeks to answer questions that it does not already know, and therefore cannot hope to effectively answer, is likely to become hugely complex in itself and ultimately doomed to fail.
This is truer than ever when we are operating at scale, hence the need for a framework and empiricism to help guide us towards finding a solution that will work for each of us in our own unique situation.
The challenges at scale are even greater and your situation even more unique. As such the Nexus framework offers some solutions to common and universal problems encountered when using Scrum at scale. It will set you up with a way of working so you can use empiricism to inspect and adapt to find solutions to your own unique challenges. It is Professional Scrum – at scale.
Tell Me More
Now that you understand the purpose of Scaled Professional Scrum and the Nexus framework, it is time to go into more detail about what it includes. First off, the important first question to ask – should we scale?
The Scrum Master is Simon Kneafsey. Simon is a Professional Scrum Trainer with Scrum.org, the home of Scrum run by Scrum co-creator, Ken Schwaber. Simon offers Professional Scrum Certification training courses globally and works with clients to introduce Scrum to their organisations.
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