Can Scrum be used for non-software products?
Can Agile be used for non-software products, let me give you a short answer. Yes, it can.
Agile offers a fantastic collaborative method of managing work that is applicable across a range of industries, project types, or even in your personal life. The beauty of Agile project management lies in its potential to deliver value at the end of each sprint while remaining flexible and open to change.
Agile project management encourages iterative development. This means that projects are divided into “user stories” — small pieces of user functionality — which are then further decomposed into tasks and then prioritized and delivered in short cycles known as sprints.
OK, now, If you’re working on a project, you’ll likely start off with a to-do list of the steps you need to move that project ahead towards its end goal. That end goal could be a product, an advertisement, an event — the options are endless. By breaking up the big tasks you need to accomplish to reach that goal into smaller, manageable tasks, you can more easily prioritize and assign them to team members. The first incremental steps of progress that result, can be tracked, measured, and shared with fellow team members, representing the first “sprint” of your non-software project’s development.
An essential element of Agile projects is collaboration among team members on an ongoing basis, not just in the early brainstorming phases of a project. For software developers, user input on new functionality is essential to determining future iterations. For non-software projects, the input of different experts working together towards a common goal is just as important to ensuring positive project development. By allowing team members to collaborate and engage in real-time, Agile-inspired workflows encourage creativity and help a project evolve positively.
The iterative nature of Agile project management relies on creating new versions of software, updated each time with changes to user stories on a continual basis. Apply this concept to non-software projects by pinpointing recurring steps and setting them to repeat automatically. This encourages consistency and efficiency in the work process, while also forcing you to constantly revisit — and, just as importantly, to reconsider — basic elements of your non-software project.
What about the Risks?
Applying Agile project management strategies to non-software projects addresses a fact that most of us in the working world don’t like to discuss: Most projects have an inherent element of risk involved. The best way to negotiate risk and combat potential failure is to be open to evolution in the project development process. By promoting individual accountability and interaction, supporting collaboration, and encouraging inspection and adaptation, Agile project management provides an adaptive framework for non-software project development.
By using Agile delivery for non-software projects, you’re promoting your team’s ability to remain creative while delivering concrete value. This is exactly what keeps people enthusiastic about their work and when people are excited about the work they’re doing, you’ll get the best ideas and greatest results. If you are really interested in Agile and want to learn more about Agile, check the first link in the description.