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Tips for Using Scrum in Contract Negotiations

5 February 2016

Ravi Sankar Konidena
STC Software


Scrum is a method for project management that focuses on efficiency and quality for delivering customer requirements. Scrum proposes an empirical process for quality delivery through a quality team and customer collaboration over contract negotiation. Contract negotiation is part of the traditional project management environment, unlike customer collaboration. Also, contract negotiation is yet to be replaced by customer collaboration as the most popular approach for project execution. Below are tips for CSMs so that they can be successful in these situations.

Don't miss Daily Scrum meetings. Daily Scrum meetings are a great way to quickly capture the important status on the project and identify any impediments that require resolution. The meetings will also give the latest status of the project progress and of the team's health.

Align the sprint cycle. Align the sprint cycle with project milestones, which are typically every two weeks instead of a common cycle of four weeks.

Don't miss the sprint retrospective. Sprint retrospective meetings help bring process improvements for the following project schedule, which is critical in contract-driven environments. The retrospective will help encourage the team to experiment, without any worries about the result.

Work from a product backlog and sprint backlog. These two artifacts are critical for project execution. Hence they require careful updates during sprint reviews.

Ignore burn-down charts. Burn-down charts, which are good for customer collaboration, can be ignored in contract environments. This is because the time spent to prepare them can be used to meet the schedule timelines, which are more important. In such environments, what matters most is the deliverable and the timelines.

Dispense with the idea of scaling Scrum in these cases. In contract cases, scaling Scrum is not a good idea to implement, given the likelihood of mounting pressure. In contract situations, Scrum should be recommended only at the basic level of project management.
 

Opinions represent those of the author and not of Scrum Alliance. The sharing of member-contributed content on this site does not imply endorsement of specific Scrum methods or practices beyond those taught by Scrum Alliance Certified Trainers and Coaches.



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