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International Scrum Master Foundation

Steen Lerche-Jensen

4.3 Development Team

The development team is the core group that builds, tests and documents the sprint delivery, but that can be a bit confusing as there might be people with skills that are not programming skills, like testers, test coaches, IT architects, domain experts, etc. The team is a group of individuals who together to commit to work on the user stories in the sprint backlog to create a valuable shippable delivery for the customer.

 Often, we talk about the whole team or the 3 amigos, which should be the perfect combination of skills for building high quality software.

Figure: The Whole-Team Approach. Teams consist of Programmers, Domain Experts, and Testers.

The whole-team approach, also called team-based approach, is a strategy for project management in which everyone on the project team is held equally responsible for the quality and success of the project. A good analogy is the “The Three Musketeers” and their motto "all for one, one for all”.

How to do this?

  1. Involve everyone with necessary knowledge and skills
  2. Five to nine people (including business stakeholders)
  3. Ideally positioned
  4. Daily stand-up meetings
  5. Every member is responsible for quality. Testers collaborate with:
    1. business representatives on acceptance tests;
    2. developers on the testing strategy and test automation.
  6. The whole-team approach (power of three) keys:
    1. transferral of knowledge within the team
    2. increase of communication and collaboration
    3. avoiding unnecessary documentation
    4. leverage of everyone’s skills

 The responsibilities of the Development Team in various scrum processes:


Development Team Responsibilities

Formation of the Development Team

Provides inputs for creation of the Collaboration Plan and the Team Building Plan

Development of Epic(s)

Ensures a clear understanding of Epic(s) and Personas

Creation of Prioritized Product Backlog

Understands the User Stories in the Prioritized Product Backlog

Conducting Release Planning

■  Agrees with other Scrum Core Team members on the Length of Sprint

■  Seeks clarification of possible new products or changes in the existing products in the refined Prioritized Product Backlog

Creation of User Stories

Provides inputs to the Product Owner on creation of User Stories

Estimation of User Stories

Estimates User Stories approved by the Product Owner

Commitment to User Stories

Chooses User Stories to be committed to in a Sprint

Identification of Tasks

Develops Task List based on agreed User Stories and Dependencies

Estimation of Tasks

Estimates effort for tasks identified, and updates the Task List if necessary

Creation of Sprint Backlog

Develops the Sprint Backlog and the Sprint Burn down Chart

Creation of Deliverables

■  Creates Deliverables

■  Identifies risks and implements possible risk mitigation actions

■  Updates Impediment Log and Dependencies

Coordination of Daily Scrum Meeting

■  Updates Burn down Chart, Scrum board, and Impediment Log

■  Discusses issues faced by individual members and seeks solutions to motivate the team

■  Identifies possible risks

■  Submits Change Requests, if required

Refining of Prioritized Product Backlog

Participates in Prioritized Product Backlog Review Meetings

Presentation and Validation of Sprints

Demonstrates completed deliverables to the Product Owner for approval

Sprint Retrospection

Identifies potential improvement opportunities from the current Sprint and agrees on an improvement action plan for the next Sprint

Project Retrospection

Participates in the Retrospect Project Meeting

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