Scrum Team and Roles

Updated 3 weeks ago by Copado Solutions

Scrum teams usually have between 5 and 11 people and it is not recommendable to move their members from one project/team to another. The reason is simple, the same way than practice improves your skills, communication and work results will be better after some time with the same people. 

Self-organization and cross-functional teams are essential features in Scrum. 

Scrum defines several roles within a Scrum Team. Find them described below:

Product Owner

The Product Owner is the person responsible for updating, prioritizing and managing the list of items to be developed. This list of items is called the Product Backlog. 

Effective product owners should: 

  • Be focused on understanding market and business requirements.
  • Prioritize the work that the development team should accomplish through the proper management of the Product Backlog.
  • Guide the team when deciding what to ship and make sure that the customer needs are being understood. 

The Product Owner is not a manager of the team and he/she will not decide how to implement things or how long it will take. His/her role consists of making sure that the highest customer/business value is being delivered first and the product backlog is being properly managed. 

Scrum Master

The Scrum Master is responsible for making Scrum understood and followed by the Scrum Team. This person fully understands the work planned and done by the development team as well as facilitates scrum methodology is being followed. 

His/her main responsibilities are: 

  • Help the Scrum Team and any other stakeholder which interacts with the team to follow the Scrum Methodology (making sure that everybody understands his/her role, the meetings are taking place when they should be, the content of these meetings is adequate, the increments are being properly delivered, etc). 
  • Remove any impediment and help the development team to keep working to maximize the delivered value. 
  • Make sure the Product Backlog is being properly managed by the Product Owner and properly understood by the development team. 
  • Coach the Development Team in self-organization and cross-functionality. 

Development Team

The development team consists of a 3 to 9 members team able to organize and manage their own work. More than 9 members will require too much management and coordination if we don’t want to lose productivity. 

The development team creates the increment of the product at the end of each iteration (Sprint). 

Within the development team, collaboration and always growing synergy are essentials to improve its efficiency and productivity after each Sprint. 

The main responsibilities of the development team are: 

  • Being cross-functional: The team contains all the necessary skills to deliver the increment of the product at the end of the sprint. 
  • Being self-organized: They decide how to turn Product Backlog items into increments of the product. The Product Owner will establish the priority of the Product Backlog items, but the development team can provide their feedback to the Product Owner to help him to prioritize. With the prioritized list of items, the development team will estimate the effort required and how to implement them. 
  • There are not any titles within the development team. All of them are developers. 
  • Each team member may have specific skills and areas of expertise, but they are a whole and they should keep improving their skills.

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