A Guide to Scrum Ceremonies: Everything You Need to Know
The basics of Scrum
Before we dive into the different Scrum ceremonies, it’s important to understand the basics of Scrum so that you use ceremonies in the right way. Here’s a quick refresher.
Scrum is one of the most popular Agile project management frameworks.
It first rose to fame in software development. However, its simplicity and efficiency have made it a well-known approach across different businesses and teams.
Scrum is designed to help teams quickly respond to change and new information, foster open communication, and embrace collaboration.
The power of Scrum comes from the fact that it builds on the development of a project through iterations, known as Sprints.
Some experts consider the Sprint itself as one of the ceremonies. Each Sprint focuses the team on completing a specific set of tasks. When they are finished, this is considered one iteration, which is followed by trials and assessment.
It consists of all the activities conducted from Sprint Planning all the way to Sprint Retrospective, including the actual items from the Product Backlog that have been completed.
Only after the Sprint is completed can the team continue onto the next iteration, bringing in a new set of tasks.
The benefits of Scrum ceremonies
Each Scrum ceremony has a specific purpose that furthers the overall goals of the project. These meetings are less of a free-for-all than other project management meetings, such as a weekly status. In other words, implementing Scrum ceremonies will cut down on time-wasting and unnecessary meetings.
Further, Scrum ceremonies increase the collaborative power of your team. The meetings help the team maintain a high level of transparency and openness.
Ceremonies also have a crucial role in keeping teams flexible and open to change. Since they happen on a planned basis, new information can be shared quickly and easily to those who need it.
You can expect productive, fast, and efficient meetings when you embrace the Scrum framework.
Who attends Scrum ceremonies?
The Scrum ceremonies are intended to bring in all the Scrum roles.
This means that the Product Owner, the Scrum Master and the Development Team are typically present at the meetings, with some exceptions.
Remember: The development team includes anyone whose skills will be used as part of this project, not just a software developer.
The Product Owner, who represents the customers and stakeholders and is responsible for ensuring the project is delivering value, can keep a full overview on the work.
The Scrum Master contributes to ceremonies as the expert on the Scrum framework. This role helps clear roadblocks, prioritizes work, and ensures Agile processes are upheld.
The rest of the Development Team naturally has to be a part of the meetings to stay in the loop on any changes to the project.
What are the 3 artifacts of Scrum?
For the overall understanding of Scrum and its ceremonies, it’s worth noting the concept of Scrum artifacts, as well. They are:
Product Increment: The tasks that the team has managed to finalize within a Sprint, building on the increments of the previously completed Sprints.
Product Backlog: A list that contains the features and tasks that a Scrum team needs to complete for a certain product or project.
Sprint Backlog: A selection of tasks from the Product Backlog that are planned for the upcoming Sprint.
The types of Scrum ceremonies
The four typical Scrum events are:
Sometimes the Sprint is also considered the fifth ceremony, but there are only four main meetings.
Best practice when getting started is to have a fixed timeframe for each ceremony. Limits keep meetings focused and productive. If any item needs further discussion, those involved can table it and pick it up with a smaller group.
If you’ve ever been in a meeting that went off on a tangent that didn’t involve you, you’ll appreciate the timeboxed nature of Scrum ceremonies.
Agree on what will get worked on and dive into details.
One hour for every week in your Sprint.
Development team, Product Owner, Scrum Master
Who should you invite to Sprint review meeting?
Everyone should be present, including project stakeholders. The team members showcase their work and everyone reviews what was completed.
How long is the Sprint review meeting?
The Sprint Review ceremony is typically no more than an hour for each week of a Sprint.
Who should you invite to Sprint Retrospective meeting?
The whole Scrum Team is invited, but the Product Owner does not need to attend.
How long is the Sprint Retrospective meeting?
The typical timeframe is 45 minutes for each week of a Sprint.
Streamlining Scrum Ceremonies with Hubstaff Tasks
Now that you understand the four Scrum Ceremonies and how they work with Sprints, automate the whole process.
Hubstaff Tasks is an Agile project management software that can facilitate better Scrum ceremonies.
Take the automated Daily Stand-up feature, for example. If everyone’s working in different time zones or if it’s hard to nail down a daily meeting, Hubstaff Tasks can replicate the Daily Stand-up for you.
Each day, Hubstaff Tasks will prompt your team members to answer three questions and submit them before wrapping up.
With Sprints, everyone can see what’s on their plate currently, what’s coming up next Sprint, and even plan into the future or move tasks into the backlog.
Integrate with Hubstaff time tracking and you’ll get daily recap emails that show you how many of the budgeted hours have been spent, which tasks are overdue, and what’s been completed.
You don’t need to pour energy into sustaining the framework when Hubstaff Tasks can do it for you. You and your team can just focus on your Sprints instead of building the right system to manage them.