One of the meetings that are less talked about and often forgotten is “Scrum of Scrum”. Done the right way, these meetings are extremely useful and ensure project success. If you haven’t heard about it, don’t worry! We will talk about this meeting and its benefits in this post.
What is “Scrum of Scrum”?
Large organisations often have multiple scrum teams working on various projects. This is warranted by the number of projects they handle and the size of teams. Also, it is quite common that these teams work closely with each other and have dependencies (think of mega-projects). Therefore, a forum to share information between these teams is inevitable.
Scrum of Scrum is the “macro” standup meeting for dependent Scrum teams to share information with each other
It is a short meeting between the dependent scrum teams to share and clarify information. The idea is to identify conflicts and inconsistencies early and find solutions.
Running “Scrum of Scrum”
Here are some insights into running this meeting.
Who runs it?
Normally, the “Scrum of Scrum” meetings are organised by a common stakeholder of all the dependent teams. It can be the Functional Manager or an equivalent individual in the organization.
It is also quite possible that the Scrum Master of one of the teams take this responsibility.
How often it is run?
SoS meetings must neither be run too often (daily) nor be too sparse (monthly).
By being too frequent, the discussion topics can evaporate fast and the respective teams might lose their motivation. By being too sparse, the sharing of information might happen very late when it is no longer useful.
Weekly is a good frequency to start with. It can be made fortnightly if the team thinks so.Scrum of Scrum meetings must neither be run too often (daily) nor be too sparse (monthly). Click To Tweet
Who attends the meeting?
It is not necessary that all team members attend this meeting. But it is mandatory that there is at least one representative per scrum team.
One idea is to send the team members in a round-robin fashion to the SoS meeting. This way, everyone gets an opportunity to represent the team and play the role of messenger.
What is the format of the meeting?
The goal of the meeting is very similar to the daily standup or daily scrum, but on a larger scale. So the format can be adapted from there.
Here is an example format.
- What are goals of the current Sprint?
- What the team has achieved last week?
- What the team plans to achieve this week?
- What are the major issues that the team is facing?
- What are the identified dependencies with other teams and the impact?
Make sure to timebox the SoS meeting. This keeps the meeting short and focused. As with daily scrum, detailed discussions, as needed, can be taken out of this meeting.Make sure to timebox the SoS meeting to keep it short and focused Click To Tweet
What are the key benefits?
Some key benefits of the SoS meeting are:
- Earlier detection and resolution of dependency issues
- Improved collaboration among scrum teams
- Potential good rapport between the teams
- Increased visibility on the organization’s big picture and various projects
- Scrum of Scrum meetings serve as an essential platform for collaboration between dependent teams
- They support a healthy flow of critical information
- Choose an optimal frequency that is sustainable and useful
- Have at least one representative from every team
- Keep it timeboxed, focusing on simple but effective questions
Do you run scrum of scrum meetings in your organization? Does it work well for you?