The term “Scrum board” comes from the ‘Scrum” framework for project management. Under the Scrum methodology, big projects are broken down into time-based tasks and are accomplished within the timeline. The timeline is generally less than a month and termed as “Sprints”.
A scrum board can simply be defined as a task management board, which is mostly used in project management. It can take both physical and digital form. The former version is in the form of a whiteboard where subtasks of a project are listed down as stories. Each story contains a description of a new product or feature. Each story is then divided into subtasks and listed down in different columns in the order of their completion and the names of people allotted to the tasks are also mentioned therein. The stories are mentioned in the first column followed by the subtasks in the subsequent columns under the categories “to be started”, “in progress”, and “completed”, respectively, by whatever name called. Organizations can add more categories as per their requirements.
The digital scrum board (online task board) is a sophisticated version that comes in the form of software tools or as an embedded feature of project management software. In scrum terminology, the tasks listed on the scrum board are termed as “sprints backlog”.
Who is responsible for managing the scrum board?
No project is one man’s task. So is the case with the management of a scrum board. It serves as a collaboration tool to work on complex projects. Hence, different parties are associated with it and its working.
The parties to a Scrum board along with their roles and responsibilities are listed as under:
- Product owner: He/she serves as the central point and decides what will be developed in the project. He/she communicates the requirement to the team and offers his/her feedback throughout the process.
- Development Team: the team consists of the personnel working in a project and consists of people belonging to different job roles and professions.
- Scrum Master: A Scrum Master is an expert in Scrum methodology and guides the team in working with scrum technology and solves their queries related to the methodology. He/she doesn’t have any say in decision making.
Benefits of using a scrum board
- Team communication and collaboration
A scrum board promotes interaction between team members working in a project. The board works as a single source of information on what is going on in the project. Team members get insights into the happenings of the project and discuss how the subtasks are progressing. It does away with the need for a separate form of communication to update every team member on the project progress. Members can leave notes and texts on each task to express their views and opinions on each step.
A Scrum board allows team members to exercise flexibility and apply changes to the project plans as it keeps progressing. Every project specification requires changes as new requirements keep cropping up. Changes are inevitable and essential for better product development. Making changes in a scrum board is quite easy and convenient.
- Cost control
With a scrum board, project planning can be done by keeping a strict check on the cost factor. It helps in measuring the real cost associated with every subtask while also preventing over usage of resources with optimum utilization. Thus, future budget forecasting for similar projects becomes easy while keeping the organization’s overall costs under control.
Scrum methodology encourages transparency between the product owner, stakeholders, and the scrum team throughout the development process to obtain feedback on each stage. This helps in taking necessary actions at a suitable time, which proves helpful to develop a successful product.
- Customer satisfaction
The active involvement of the Product Owner proves beneficial for the product and the progress as better results are derived. Moreover, the flexibility allowed by the Scrum board enables the team to bring out every kind of change in the development process with ease. These factors lead to enhanced customer satisfaction and help in building long-lasting relationships.
3 Benefits of an Online Task Board
Both physical and online task boards have their merits and demerits. However, in this technology-oriented business world, an online task board stands out for its unique advantages. Given below are three benefits of an online task board that are not enjoyed by businesses using a physical task board:
- Best for remote teams
Business organizations, nowadays, work with remote teams sitting at different offices, in different regions under different time zones. With cloud-computing technologies, people can work while sitting at the comfort of their home or while being at the go.
An online task board is best when team members are located in different regions or offices. They can access the scrum board from their devices and collaborate on the tasks. There is no need for them to be in the same place to successfully complete a project, as the scrum board will also enable communication between them to share their opinions and feedback directly through the software technology.
- Historical information
Another important benefit of an online task board is that you do not have to erase any information to add new ones. Thus, team members and managers can view historical information whenever required. If any issues occur in the project or its working, teams can check old records to identify where the issue occurred to correct it. This is a very important benefit, which is not available in physical task boards.
- Reports generation
Another amazing advantage of an online task board, which solves a great deal of effort on the part of team members, is automated reports generation. They do not have to go out of their way to create reports. With just a click of the fingers, online task boards can generate detailed reports on the progress of the project saving a lot of precious time. The reports, besides being accurate, can be customized as per the requirements of the team.