A Complete Guide On Daily Scrum: Meaning, Steps And Tips

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 24 September 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Companies that use the agile project management framework in their software development and debugging phases may face challenges in completing goals within a short period. Because of this, scrum meetings are an essential part of the agile model. Understanding how to contribute to daily scrum meetings can improve communication and collaboration amongst team members, streamline the processes and ensure they end on time. In this article, we discuss what a daily stand-up or scrum meeting entails, share its advantages, explain how it differs from a status meeting, outline the steps to conduct it and also list some effective scrum practices.

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What Is A Daily Scrum?

A daily scrum is a brief meeting, usually under 15 minutes, where a team working on a project gathers to discuss the work they have done since the previous meeting. A scrum is an agile approach that emphasises segmenting a project into achievable sprints within the specified period. The sprint goal is typically a bigger project that the team has committed to working on and that usually takes between 14 to 30 days to finish. Based on the sprint target, the team prepares a list of tasks that they all agree to finish.

The team discusses their plans for the day's or week's work in a scrum meeting and any potential roadblocks. The team assesses their progress towards the sprint target in the scrum. After each sprint, the team delivers a functioning version of the project to the client to assure their satisfaction. They also consult with the client and other stakeholders ahead of the future sprint, leveraging their feedback to make any necessary adjustments. Scrum embodies agile ideals by producing deliverable products quickly and regularly, encouraging client involvement and adapting to frequent changes.

Related: What Is A Sprint In Agile? (Definition, Benefits And Example)

Benefits Of Regular Scrum

Doing everyday stand-up meetings during a sprint can produce these benefits for an organisation:

  • Collaboration and ownership: In a development team, scrums promote teamwork and employee autonomy through effective communication and a division of responsibilities. It enables employees to take ownership of the performance and success of their projects.

  • Productivity: Daily meetings aid in identifying and resolving potential obstacles or blockers, which is anything that a team member might require asking another person to manage before they can proceed with their own task. The team can sustain a greater level of productivity by spotting and eliminating blockers as soon as they arise through daily meetings.

  • Control: A team that meets regularly often has access to accurate and reliable data on project performance, time, cost and decision-making. With the clarity and openness this data offers, it is possible to make adjustments effectively and control project performance as necessary.

  • Focus: Scrums' primary focus is only on doing the requisite tasks and accomplishing the sprint goal. When a team member is working on something unrelated to the sprint goal, their peers can assist them in refocusing their efforts on tasks that are more relevant to the goal.

  • Timeliness: Scrums can guarantee that the team is moving closer to achieving the sprint goal. This makes sure that the project gets finished on schedule.

  • Additional meetings: Discussing and resolving day-to-day issues immediately and on the spot means lowering the chances of any critical problems or urgent discussions. This decreases the number of long and frequent meetings throughout the course of the day.

  • Return on investment (ROI): The scrum meeting is an approach that can help reduce time to produce useful results better than traditional methods. Because of this, agile-based initiatives may have a high ROI due to the early accumulation, earlier receipt of revenue and other intended benefits.

  • Team morale: When teams interact and provide feedback to one another, the environment of an organisation improves and becomes more satisfying. Self-management avoids the disconnect that might result from a top-down approach by putting decision-making in the hands of the team and boosting their morale.

Related: Agile Vs. Scrum: What Is The Difference? (With FAQs)

Difference Between A Status Meeting And A Scrum

Status meetings are events that are periodically planned where the management or host gathers data on the project's status. Informing others of updates is necessary at status meetings. Here, the members of the development team may not have the authority to decide, as an outside party, such as a manager, may question their choices and instruct them on what they do next.

The daily stand-up meeting is not a status update session where a manager gathers data about who is running behind schedule. Instead, it is a gathering where team members make commitments to one another for the next 24 hours. Team members can work more autonomously, and the meeting serves the purpose of establishing clear communication and removing obstacles to progress. While day-to-day scrum is useful for inspection and adaptation within the team, status meetings are tools the project manager uses to monitor a project.

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How To Conduct A Daily Scrum?

You can easily carry out an everyday scrum with these steps:

1. Gather the development team

The product owner, scrum master and members of the development team are the three roles in a scrum. Having just the development team present is ideal for a successful daily stand-up. Scrum meetings work best when the development team is mostly engaging with one another, rather than hearing manager announcements or conversing with coworkers who are not on the team.

The scrum master, employees from other departments and the product owner may also attend to listen to the proceedings. Limiting the number of attendees can better guarantee that the meeting is short and focused and that the individuals involved get the time to speak.

Related: Learn How To Become A Scrum Master (With Tips And Skills)

2. Set a timer

Scrum meetings often have a duration of around 15 minutes at the start of every working day of the sprint. Setting a timer can help everyone monitor the time taken and end the meeting as per schedule. If a scrum master is present, they can take this responsibility as well.

Related: 16 Types Of Scrum Master Certifications And Their Benefits

3. Ask the three important questions

The three essential questions everyone usually answers in a daily stand-up are what they did yesterday, what they are going to do today, and if there are any impediments on their way. Sharing each person's successes from the previous day and their goals for the present day gets everyone motivated to finish their tasks for the sprint. This also creates a shared understanding of what everyone is working on and the tasks team members may require undertaking. It helps team members develop accountability and a sense of commitment to their tasks.

Discussing obstacles every day ensures smooth process flow and productive workdays. A scrum meeting may only last a few minutes if there are no blockers. Similarly, if there is a blocker, a team member may also mention the alternative task they are working on while they wait for the blocker to be resolved.

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4. Plan the rest of the workday

Depending on what everyone promised they were going to do on the current day, everyone arranges their schedule and prepares their tasks for the day. This way, everyone only focuses on doing relevant work that contributes to achieving the common goal. After the meeting, the scrum master usually addresses any issues or concerns raised during the scrum. To do so, there might be additional meetings throughout the day.

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Scrum Meeting Tips

Given below are some scrum best practices you can follow for a successful stand-up meeting every day:

  • Make sure everyone is standing up. Do not book a conference room and instead gather everyone in the same common area every day for the scrum meeting. This keeps the energy high, maintains consistency and helps keep the conversation short and constructive.

  • Include the same group of people. Disruptions are possible when the individuals change frequently. It is likely to be necessary to provide updates for those attendees who might not be aware of background information from earlier meetings.

  • Keep the gadgets away. Before starting the meeting, encourage everyone to put their mobile phones in silent or flight mode. This can significantly decrease the chances of people getting distracted.

  • Take turns while speaking. Each individual only gets to talk once to ensure addressing everyone's enquiries. When someone speaks, the other participants listen intently or offer pertinent questions without interrupting abruptly.

  • Keep conversations brief. It is advisable to encourage the attendees to give a short, relevant update on their work status without going into great detail. Team members ought to focus their attention during the meeting solely on the task completed and prevalent issues.

  • Avoid solving problems during the meeting. If the scrum turns into a problem-solving session, it might extend more than the assigned period. The scrum master may postpone these enquiries unless they are essential to the project and require urgent attention.

  • Use scrum management software. It automates the progress monitoring process and makes it easier to trace the status of the sprint at a glance. It can also enhance team management and collaboration.

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