Scrum Provides Value-driven Delivery

May 18, 2017

When developing a product or software, one of the most important questions to ask is “What do we make first?” Popular approaches that help answer this question include Test-driven Development, Dynamic Systems Development, Crystal and Feature-driven Development. Since value is a primary reason for any organization to move forward with a project, Scrum emphasizes Value-driven Delivery.

A project is a collaborative enterprise to either create new products or services or to deliver results as defined in the Project Vision Statement. Projects are usually impacted by constraints of time, cost, scope, quality people and organizational capabilities. Usually, the results generated by projects are expected to create some form of business or service value. Scrum facilitates delivery of value very early on in the project and continues to do so throughout the project life-cycle.

One of the key characteristics of any project is the uncertainty of results or outcomes. It is impossible to guarantee project success at completion, irrespective of the size or complexity of a project. Considering this uncertainty of achieving success, it is important to start delivering results as early in the project as possible. This early delivery of results, and thereby value, provides an opportunity for reinvestment and proves the worth of the project to interested stakeholders.

In order to provide Value-driven Delivery, it is important to meet a few requirements. First, those involved in a project should understand what adds value to customers and users, and should prioritize the high value requirements in the Prioritized Product Backlog. Second, those involved in a project should decrease uncertainty and constantly address risks that can potentially decrease value if they materialize; it is important to show product increments to project stakeholders at the end of each Sprint, enabling effective management of changes. Third, those involved in a project should create deliverables by producing potentially shippable, value-based product increments during each Sprint so that customers start realizing value early in the project.

The concept of Value-driven Delivery in Scrum makes the Scrum framework very attractive for business stakeholders and senior management. This concept is very different when compared with traditional project management models where requirements are not prioritized by business value, and value is realized only at the end of the project when the final product or service is delivered.

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