Innovation without strict rules: Why we love Scrum

It’s important for us to move forward without losing perspective. That’s why SKIDATA uses Scrum methods within software and hardware development.

Mountains of muscle are crowded together. Rugby can be tough when two teams form a human heap, fighting for the ball. This is known as a “scrum.”

Don’t worry: there’s no all-out fight between software developers at SKIDATA. On the contrary, following the Scrum principle, experts work side-by-side in interdisciplinary teams. The method originates in project and product management, in particular in “agile” software development. Scrum takes its name from the daily meetings where employees coordinate tasks and push to drive the project forward. But what does this really mean?

First of all, Scrum involves a lot of direct exchange between colleagues. There are no hierarchies in Scrum teams. SKIDATA relies on its employees’ sense of responsibility. Everyone has the same rights and duties, but different skills. “The product owner interfaces with the customer and acts as a client for the development team,” explains Markus Novak, Head of Software House at SKIDATA. “The Scrum Master ensures the team works together as smoothly as possible and is responsible for compliance with the process framework.” Finally, the development team “consists of people with expertise in all areas necessary for the work.” Novak emphasises the transparency that results, allowing obstacles to be removed quickly. Instead of having teams work on functions for months in isolation, Scrum enables fast and practical results. “There are no longer phases in which, for example, only analysis, design or testing is carried out,” says Novak.

Team members organise tasks themselves into “tickets,” which are prioritised within the framework of a “sprint” – always with the security and reliability of our solutions in mind. “There are time horizons of two weeks. The coordination takes place with simple tools such as a whiteboard, where all relevant information is visualised,” says Novak. Employees present finished features in a sprint review, without elaborate PowerPoint slides, but live on site. “Feedback either confirms that requirements were implemented as expected or is used as input for the backlog,” says Novak. The cycles ends and the next iteration begins. Transparency, dynamics and communication – that means up-to-date software and hardware development at SKIDATA . As Novak's team says: “Scrum is the natural way to develop software.”

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