Things You Didn’t Know About Role of Scrum Master

Role of Scrum Master

Well, before we look into Role of Scrum Master, there is something more that we have to ponder upon.

Many of us might be knowing what a Scrum is, but first let us get to know Why, When and How the Scrum came into existence, creating its space for itself leaving behind the other methodologies that were already existing in the Software Industry.

Jeff Sutherland, John Scumniotales and Jeff McKenna executed and implemented Scrum at the Easel Corporation for the first time in the year 1993.

They drew inspiration from the sport of rugby, where the whole team plays it with integrity among themselves with great support for each other passing ball among themselves to reach the target.

In 2001, Schwaber and his teammates got together in Utah and sketched the Agile Manifesto, which became the action plan for software industries around the world to pursue an essentially different way of creating software.

Scrum has now a history of 25 years and its use is continuously growing. It is even used widely outside of the IT Industry.

It is revolutionizing the world of work as we know, for the betterment of the Development of whatever/wherever it is used.

What is Scrum?

Scrum is the child of Agile Methodology. The Scrum methodology mimics the values and postulates of agile but includes further outlines and stipulations, especially regarding specific software development practices.

It is a framework that helps teams work together with the goal of delivering new software capability every 2-4 weeks.

What is Scrum

It also helps teams to learn by experiences, self-organize while working on a problem and reflect on their wins and losses to continuously upgrade and do better in the next cycle.

In fact, it’s the most popular sub-division of agile methodology. According to the 12th annual State of Agile report, 70% of the IT industry uses Scrum or a Scrum hybrid.

Advantages of Scrum Methodology

  • Faster feedback
  • Continuous enhancement
  • Accelerated adjustment to change
  • Stimulated delivery
  • Increased stakeholder satisfaction
  • Happier employees with boosted morale

The whole project term is divided into Sprints. A sprint is a short, time-boxed period when a scrum team works to achieve a fixed amount of product/output.

Sprints are considered the heart of scrum and agile methodologies, and acquiring sprints right will help your agile team sail through the development process better with fewer troubles.

To design and plan your forthcoming sprint, you use the sprint planning meetings. Sprint planning is a group activity where the team members work together on:

What work can be done in this sprint cycle and how will the chosen work be done?

Choosing the right user stories for a sprint is a collaborative effort among the product owner, scrum master, and development team.

The product owners discuss the objective of the sprint that they intend to achieve and the product backlog items(if any) that, upon completion, would achieve the sprint goal.

What are the Roles in Scrum?

Though there are particular roles and responsibilities for the members of the Team, the Scrum Team as a whole is responsible to deliver the committed delivery in time and with guaranteed quality.

A good result or a failure is never attributed to a single team member but rather the result of the Scrum Team.

Scrum has Three Roles:

  1. Scrum Product Owner
  2. Scrum Master
  3. Development Team

Who is Scrum Product Owner?

It is the responsibility of the product owner to ensure that the Agile team is delivering the most, what they have planned for the current Sprint.

The product owner is the one who tells the development of what is important to be delivered. Trust between these two roles is crucial.

The Product owner should act as a bridge between the customer and the scrum team and also balance the other stakeholders.

So the product owner must take all the inputs from the customers and the team and prioritize the work.

This is probably the most important responsibility because conflicts and unclear pathways would reduce the effectiveness and the quality of the work the team delivers, which in turn hampers the trust the client has in the team.

What are the Scrum Product Owner’s Responsibilities?

  • Managing the backlog: The product owner should know about the backlog and other people that add items to the product backlog should ensure that they communicate with the product owner.
  • Release management: It is important for the product owner to know when the deliverables should and can be released.
  • Stakeholder management: The product owner would be working with the beta users, customers, delivery of the clients and organizational heads to effectively ensure that the team is delivering to their expectations, which is a lot of talking.

By the end of the day, it’s not that all the requirements, acceptance criteria, writing the User-stories and communication with the client are all the product owner’s work.

There are no hard and fast rules, as agile and scrum is totally a collaborative discovery.

What is Scrum Master?

The Scrum Master (SM) is responsible for holding the whole team together making sure that the scrum is smoothly sailing through.

SM keeps track of all the activities on a daily basis in the scrum call and also sketches what the team would plan to do the next day.

SM helps the Product Owner by making them better understand and communicate with the team and to the stakeholders.

What is Scrum Master

SM also helps to manage the backlogs, helps them plan the work with the team and break down that work accordingly to deliver them effectively.

SM holds the Product Owner in one of the hands and the development team on the other hand.

SM helps the development team to self-organize, focus on outcomes and manage road blockers.

What are the important Role Of Scrum Master?

  • See Through: The scrum master is entitled to ensure that the scrum team works in a transparent way, actually, it is much harder than it looks.
  • Learn from the work: The empirical process is not easy and requires the scrum master to train the scrum team on breaking down work to chunks, defining clear outcomes and reviewing those results.
  • Self Organization: The scrum master encourages the team to step outside their comfort zone and try different things and use practices to expose and challenge predefined ideas about role boundaries and responsibilities.
  • Values: Scrum defines 5 values of courage, focus, commitment, respect, and openness. The scrum master takes an active role in encouraging and reminding everyone of the significance of these values.

Above roles of scrum master commonly used in every project by scrum master to follow scrum smoothly & effectively.

What as scrum master should not do?

  • Hard Task Master: the Scrum Master should never act team boss or team manager forcing developers to work for more hours.
  • Take sides: Scrum Master should act as a mediator in a situation of conflicts. SM should not take sides or lean towards anyone’s opinion.
    Avoid frequent follow-ups: Scrum Masters must have trust in their team and avoid constant follow up of the developers. Give them space which will help them be free and represent better in their fields of work.
  • Decision-Making issues: It is the scrum master’s responsibility to make sure that every member’s decision is heard. The scrum master should not impose his/her opinion on others leading to failures.
  • POC issues: Scrum master should not act as a single point of contact. There would be a communication gap building up. The product owner should also communicate directly to the developers reducing the gaps.

Scrum Development Team

The development team are the people involved in the work. At first glance, you may think the “development team” means the “Coders”.

Development Team

That is not true, rather there are so many other roles entitled to so different works involved namely, UX/UI Designers, Testing team, Programmers, Delivery Team and with a team size of probably 7-10 for each sub-team.

The Product Owner anchors the priorities, and the work is controlled by the Scrum Process and monitored by the Scrum Master. But all other responsibilities are laid at the feet of the Development Team.

What are the Scrum Development Team Responsibilities:

  • Delivering their own entitled work in the sprint.
  • To ensure transparency in the sprint by meeting up daily at the daily scrum      (also called as stand up calls).
  • The daily scrum provides transparency to the work and provides a dedicated place for team members to seek help, talk about success and highlight issues and road blockers/show-stoppers.
  • The scrum master might help the daily scrum, but ultimately it is the responsibility of the development team to run this meeting. It is their meeting to help them, as a group, to inspect and adapt the work they are doing and work in a more effective way.

How to become a Scrum Master?

To become a Scrum Master, you need to attend an online exam to get certified as a Scrum Master.

What are the certifications required for Scrum Master?

As an extension to standard Scrum Master certifications like Certified Scrum Master (CSM) and Professional Scrum Master I (PSMI), there are also options designed especially for developers (CSD) and product owners (CSPO).

Before deciding on a particular certification, consider which one suits your role in the industry.

The cost for the course and the exam put together will round up to INR 25,000 to INR 30,000, when it comes to the Certified Scrum Master (CSM).

Scrum Master Certifications

Identify an institute of your choice, register, and attend the training online or classroom according to your preference.

Once the mandatory training is completed, the Institute or the Coach/Trainer will send a request to Scrum Alliance to create a profile for you, using that complete your detailed information and complete the test.

There would be 50 MCQs of which you have to get 37 correct within a 60 minutes time to pass the exam.

Once you pass the exam, the certificate would be sent to you with a validity of 730 days or 2 years.

What is a scrum master salary?

The average salary for a Certified Scrum Master (CSM) in India is ₹12,37,857 per annum.

An entry-level Certified Scrum Master (CSM) with less than 1-year experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of INR 7,14,617.

CSM with 5-9 years of experience earns an average compensation of INR 11,65,332. An experienced CSM with 10-19 years of experience earns an average of INR 14,63,483.

When it comes to Canada, the average Scrum Master salary is $97,500(INR 53,62,500) per year or $50 per hour.

Salary of a Scrum Master

Entry-level positions start at $48,750(INR 26,81,250) per year while most experienced workers make up to $165,750 (INR 91,16,250) per year.

Salaries are highest at Visa, Inc. where the average pay is INR 27,34,351.

Companies that offer high salaries for this role include Amdocs, Inc,. and Accenture, earning around INR 15,18,000 and INR 13,89,072, respectively.

Accenture Technology Solutions pays the lowest at around INR 9,40,000.

EY (Ernst & Young) and Wipro also pay on the lower end of the scale, paying INR 10,75,001 and INR 13,00,000 respectively.

Have you been a part of Scrum Master & followed Role of Scrum Master? Please let us know your experience in the comments.


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