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SDLC Scrum Process

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Contents

1 Overview

Scrum is an iterative and incremental framework for project management mainly deployed in agile software development environments. Scrum has the following characteristics:

  • A short, fixed schedule of cycles with adjustable scope, called sprints, to address rapidly changing development needs.
  • A repeating sequence of events, milestones, and meetings.
  • A practice of implementing and testing new requirements, called stories, to ensure some work is release-ready after each sprint.
  • Commonly used roles such as product owner, scrum master, and team member.

The Scrum Process Pack is a ServiceNow plugin.

2 The Scrum Framework

The scrum framework contains the following processes:

  • Product Backlog: The product owner creates and maintains a product backlog, which is a collection of user stories captured within a scrum product. A product represents a development target of related functionality that is composed of themes, epics, and stories. A product owner typically ranks the stories in a product backlog by order of importance.
  • Release Backlog: A release is a time frame in which a number of development iterations are completed. The product owner collaborates with the scrum master to determine which stories should be targeted for a release. Stories from one or more products can be targeted to a release. Typically, the decision process is based on the release timescale, the story rank within the product backlog, and the story complexity. Other criteria can be used depending on the nature of the project. The targeted stories form the release backlog. Stories in the release backlog are targeted to a release, but have not yet been associated to a sprint. Throughout the release, the release backlog shrinks as stories are moved into sprints. As this occurs, the product owner can see what remains to be completed.
  • Sprint Backlog: The sprint backlog is a list of stories the sprint team members have agreed to complete for a sprint. During sprint planning, the scrum master collaborates with the scrum team to decide which stories they can commit to delivering in the sprint. Typically, they commit to the top ranked stories first. The team decides what scrum tasks are necessary for each story. The product owner should be present to answer any questions.
  • Sprints: Team members work to complete stories in the current sprint backlog. Team progress is tracked during daily stand-up meetings in which members discuss the work completed the previous day, the planned work for the next day, and any blocking issues. The scrum master keeps the team members focused on completing the stories in the current sprint and tries to remove any impediments they face. At the end of the sprint, all the stories should be complete. Any incomplete stories are moved into an appropriate backlog. A review meeting at the end of the sprint, known as a retrospective, allows team members to discuss what went well and what did not, with the goal of improving future sprints.
  • Sprint planning: The next sprint begins with the team importing stories from the release backlog into the sprint backlog.

3 How to Use These Procedures

The SDLC Scrum Process Pack provides the functionality to support multiple teams using the scrum methodology. A key benefit for an IT organization is how the scrum application uses data already held in the ServiceNow database, such as configuration items (CI) and user information. If required, scrum activities can be tied into IT Service Management processes such as Incident, Problem, and Change Management. The procedures described here are a common practice approach to scrum that uses all the Scrum Process Pack functionality for illustrative purposes. You might choose to implement scrum differently. These procedures describe several methods for creating records where alternatives exist, with the intent of giving you different options. To see all the common practice tasks, refer to The Scrum Process.

4 Activities and Artifacts

4.1 Activities

The following are typical activities of the scrum process:

  • Sprint planning: The scrum master and team members select the stories that they can commit to deliver during a sprint.
  • Daily scrum: The scrum master meets briefly with team members each day to discuss progress, planned work, and any impediments (known as blockers).
  • Sprint reviews: At the end of the sprint, the scrum master and team members discuss the work completed and demonstrate new features.
  • Sprint retrospectives: At the end of the sprint, the scrum master and team members discuss the work completed and demonstrate the completed work to the product owner. In addition, the team reviews the sprint and discusses ways to improve the execution of future sprints.

4.2 Artifacts

  • Velocity chart: A chart displaying the historical performance of a team, used to better estimated the amount of work the team can deliver in a future sprint.
  • Burn down chart: A chart generated during a sprint that provides at-a-glance reporting of ideal sprint progress against actual sprint progress over time.

5 Installed with the Scrum Process Pack

A number of new roles and permissions are provided with the SDLC Scrum Process Pack. For more details, see the instructions for assigning roles in Scrum.

5.1 Scrum Process Pack Modules

SDLC (Scrum Process) Modules
  • Planning
    • Planning Board: Track and manage backlogs. Drag-and-drop feature lets you move stories between products, releases, and sprint backlogs.
    • Products: View a list of all products or create a new product.
    • My Products: View products for which you are the product owner.
    • Themes: View active themes or create a new theme. A theme is a high level object or goal associated with a product. A theme could be something abstract, such as Performance Tuning, or more specific, such as a Web interface. Each product can have multiple themes. You can associate a story to a theme and view all the stories associated with a specific theme for a specific product. Themes are an optional concept.
    • Open Releases: View active releases or create a new release. A release contains its related products, sprints, and teams.
    • Open Sprints: View active sprints or create a new sprint. A sprint is associated with a single release and might contain stories, tasks and a sprint team. .
    • Open Epics: View active epics or create a new epic. An epic is a large story that is too big to be delivered in a single sprint. Typically, a product owner breaks down epics into smaller stories. If an epic is very large, the product owner can create sub epics that use a parent/child relationship.
  • Stories
    • Create New: Create a new story. A story describes a self-contained piece of work required to deliver a story. Tasks are an optional concept, and you might not need the level of detail or effort that they require.
    • Open Stories: View active stories or create a new story.
    • Assigned to me: View all stories you are working on.
  • Tasks
    • Open Tasks: View all active tasks or create a new task. A task describes a discrete amount of work for a story.
    • Assigned to me: View all tasks you are working on.
  • Enhancements
    • Create New: Create a new enhancement. An enhancement is an improvement to an existing product.
    • Open Enhancements: View active enhancements or create a new enhancement.
    • Assigned to me: View all enhancements you are working on.
  • Defects
    • Create New: Create a new defect record. A defect is any deviation from an expected behavior for a product.
    • Open Defects: View active defects or create a new defect record.
    • Assigned to me: View all defects you are working on.
  • Administration

5.2 Properties

Navigate to SDLC (Scrum Process) > Administration > Properties to configure the following properties:

Property Description
com.snc.sdlc.scrum.pp.progress.story.states Stories in any one of the states specified in this comma separated list are shown in the progress board (in the order specified).
com.snc.sdlc.scrum.pp.progress.task.state Tasks in any one of the states specified in this comma separated list are shown in the progress board (in the order specified)
com.snc.sdlc.scrum.pp.task_uses_actual_hours Enable the Actual hours field in the Scrum Task form. Displays actual hours of tasks on the task progress board.
com.snc.sdlc.scrum.pp.progress_board_parent_updates Specifies whether changes to tasks in the progress board update their parent stories.
com.snc.sdlc.scrum.pp.default_sprint_length The default sprint length (in days) used if the length cannot be calculated from the sprint.

5.3 Changes to Tables and States

New states in the Scrum Process Pack override previous states for all scrum tables. The Scrum Process Pack introduces the following changes to the SDLC - SCRUM tables:

Table Update
Scrum Task [rm_scrum_task]
  • Updated states
  • Custom Type values added
  • Priorities defined
Testing Task [rm_test] Records are converted into records in the Scrum Task [rm_scrum_task] table.
Documentation Task [rm_doc] Records are converted into records in the Scrum Task [rm_scrum_task] table.
Release Task [rm_task] Records identified as being used in a scrum context are converted into records in the Scrum Task [rm_scrum_task] table.
Story [rm_story] State and priority fields for records adjusted. An attempt is made to determine the sprint and release to which they belong.
Epic [rm_epic] Records have their states updated.
Sprint [rm_sprint] Records have their State fields updated. An attempt is made to determine the release to which they belong.
Release [rm_release_scrum] Records have their State fields updated.
Product [rm_product] Records cloned as records in the Application Model [cmdb_application_product_model] table.

6 Enhancements

6.1 Calgary

The following enhancements are added in the Calgary release:

  • Users can be assigned automatically when dragging a task on the task board.
  • Multiple sprints can be created at the same time.
  • Team members can be identified by roles, such as product owner, scrum master, and developer.
  • The Enhancement and Defect forms in the SDLC (scrum) application no longer display the Documentation Tasks, Testing Tasks, or Release Tasks related lists.
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