Definition of Scrum

Scrum (n): An [agile] framework within which people can address complex adaptive problems, while productively and creatively delivering products of the highest possible value. 

Source: Scrum Guide, November 2017 version

Scrum is the most widely used and popular agile framework. The term agile describes a specific set of foundational principles and values for organizing and managing complex work.

The term Scrum comes from a 1986 Harvard Business Review article in which authors Hirotaka Takeuchi and Ikujiro Nonaka made an analogy comparing high-performing, cross-functional teams to the scrum formation used by rugby teams. 

Though it has its roots in software development, today Scrum refers to a lightweight framework that is used in every industry to deliver complex, innovative products and services that truly delight customers. It is simple to understand, but difficult to master.

Fundamentals of Agile & Scrum

Agile principles and values foster the mindset and skills businesses need in order to succeed in an uncertain and turbulent environment. The term agile was first used in the Manifesto for Agile Software Development (Agile Manifesto) back in 2001. 


The main tenets of the Agile Manifesto are:

Individuals and interactions over processes and tools

Working [products] over comprehensive documentation

Customer collaboration over contract negotiation

Responding to change over following a plan


That is, while there is value in the items on the right,

we value the items on the left more.



Scrum fulfils the vision of the Agile Manifesto by helping individuals and businesses organize their work to maximize collaboration, minimize red tape, deliver frequently, and create multiple opportunities to inspect and adapt.

Difference Between Scrum & Agile

The difference between agile and Scrum is that agile refers to a set of principles and values shared by several methodologies, processes and practices; Scrum is one of several agile frameworks--and is the most popular.
Learn more about the difference between Scrum and Agile and how they differ from Waterfall. 

Want to learn more? Enroll in our free Introduction to Scrum eLearning module or Learn more about our Certifications.