What is the Major Difference Between Agile and Scrum

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25th Oct, 2022
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22nd Jan, 2017
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What is the Major Difference Between Agile and Scrum

Traditional project management is a universal practice that includes a set of developed techniques used for planning, estimating, and controlling activities. Traditional project management is mainly used on projects where activities are completed in a sequence and there are rarely any changes. It is going to be a slow development if your client isn’t clear about the requirements. There isn’t much space for the customer’s opinion in every development process. There isn’t much space for new ideas to employ in Traditional Methodology. The sequential method doesn’t have room for continuous evolution. Sometimes the stakeholders are not sure about their requirements at the start and the ECT cannot commence until all the requirements are specified. 

To overcome these drawbacks of traditional project management, Agile Methodologies were introduced which focus on the feedback of their clients and add new features through iterative development. Before jumping into the major differences between agile and scrum, let's roughly understand what each of them means. 

Agile vs Scrum: Head-to-head Comparision

ParameterAGILESCRUM
DefinitionAgile project management is a project philosophy or framework that takes an iterative approach towards the accomplishment of a task or a project.

Scrum project management is one of the most popular Agile methodologies used by project managers. 

Whereas Agile is a framework,  Scrum is a specific methodology from start to end on how one manages a project. 

PrinciplesCustomer satisfaction, welcoming changing requirements, deliver working software frequently, promoting sustainable development.  Control over the empirical process, Self-organization, as the Scrum process relies on many individuals, self-organization is essential, Collaboration, Value-based prioritization, Time-boxing, in Scrum, tasks are completed in “sprints,” with specific lengths of time assigned, iterative development.  
MethodolgyAgile is an iterative approach to software development methodology.  Scrum is a framework of agile methodology. In which incremental builds are delivered to end user in every two to three weeks.  
PrioritizesPrioritization in agile is the act of deciding in what order the agile team will work on the requirements in a project.Scrum focuses Value-based Prioritization as one of the core principles that drives its structure
AlternativesWaterfallExtreme programming and Crystal
Client satifactionThe priority of agile development is always to satisfy the customer by providing continuous delivery of valuable software.  In this process, a build is delivered after each sprint to the client for their feedback.  
Modes of CollaborationCollaboration between the members of various cross-functional teams.Daily sprint meetings
ExamplesThe company ‘SKY’, the banking giant JP Morgan, etcNetherlands, BBC’s, Adobe

Agile vs Scrum: Detailed Comparision

1. Definition

What is Agile? 

In simple words,  Agile project management is a project philosophy or framework that takes an iterative approach towards the accomplishment of a task or a project. 

The Project Management Institute (PMI) says the goal of the Agile approach is to create early, measurable ROI through defined, iterative delivery of product features meaning delivering a simple version of a project to the client, taking their feedback and making the improvements per those feedback. 

What is Scrum? 

Let's take about what is Scrum Project Management. 

Scrum project management is one of the most popular Agile methodologies used by project managers. Whereas Agile is a framework,  Scrum is a specific methodology from start to end on how one manages a project. It provides a process for how to identify the work, who will do the work, how it will be done, and when it should be completed by. 

2. Principles

Customer satisfaction, welcoming changing requirements, even late in development for the customer’s competitive advantage, deliver working software frequently, with a preference to the shorter timescale, business people and developers must work together daily throughout the project, build projects around motivated individuals, give them the environment and support they need, and trust them to get the job done, working software is the primary measure of progress, agile processes promote sustainable development. 

Control over the empirical process, Self-organization, as the Scrum process relies on many individuals, self-organization is essential, Collaboration, Value-based prioritization, Time-boxing, in Scrum, tasks are completed in “sprints,” with specific lengths of time assigned, iterative development. 

3. Prioritizes

Prioritization in literary terms means the decision of arranging things in order of their importance. Prioritization in agile is the act of deciding in what order the agile team will work on the requirements in a project. Further prioritization process helps the agile team to consider the bare minimum features necessary to create customer value. 

Scrum focuses Value-based Prioritization as one of the core principles that drives the structure and functionality of the entire Scrum framework. Its main motive is to deliver a good version of the final product to the customer on an early and continuous basis. 

While prioritizing, following three factors are considered are value, risk or uncertainty and the dependencies in the respectable order. 

4. Modes of Collaboration

Ultimately, team collaboration is the foundation of successful agile working. Giving teams clear responsibilities and providing space for them to organize and manage themselves allows more freedom to meet goals and overcome challenges, Agile values rely on people, so team members need to understand how to work using agile methods and believe in the benefits. Each agile iteration focuses on getting something done rather than getting stuck in a maze of upfront planning, 

Collaboration in Scrum refers to the Scrum Core Team working together and interfacing with the stakeholders to create and validate the deliverables of the project to meet the goals outlined in the Project Vision. Cooperation occurs when the work product consists of the sum of the work efforts of various people on a team. Teams can learn from each sprint to carry the most innovative solutions through the whole project and onto the next one. 

5. Examples

The company ‘SKY’ which has launched products to combat the likes of Apple’s TV Box has been placing Agile methodologies and open source at the center of their software development approach. The baking giant JP Morgan use Agile methodologies were a key part of the initiative to overhauled their business processes to help improve product development. 

Netherlands has successfully executed Scrum after a traditionally managed project failed to deliver their goals. The Head of Development of the BBC’s New Media Division discusses how they effectively use scrum in their team management, Adobe explains how they used Scrum to successfully coordinate the actions of a distributed Scrum Team 

6. Alternatives

An alternative to Agile is Waterfall, which is a more traditional project management style. 

Extreme programming and Crystal are good alternatives to scrum. 

7. Methodology

On the whole, it is easy to see why Agile and Scrum can often be confused for each other, as they both rely on an iterative process, frequent feedback from clients, and collaborative decision-making. The key difference between Agile and Scrum is that while Agile is a project management philosophy that works on set of principles. 

Scrum is a specific Agile methodology that is used to facilitate a project. 

Scrum is broken down into shorter sprints and smaller deliverables to get client feedback for betterment. In Agile, everything is delivered at the end of the project. Agile involves members from various cross-functional teams working in cooperation, while a Scrum project team includes specific roles. 

Agile vs. Scrum: How are They Similar?

Apart from differences, there are very few similarities. Because agile and Scrum are different methods. Agile and Scrum methodologies are created to convey the idea of demolishing traditional project management with collaborative working. That gives an accurate consumer understanding of the software development rotation. This implies that Scrum will include similar processes to Agile. But the agile approach might not share a few similar aspects with the scrum methodology. 

Agile vs. Scrum: Which one to Choose?

To solve the dilemma of what to use for your project, you must thoroughly understand the ins and outs of agile and scrum methodology since scrum is one of the most popular framework implementations within the Agile process. So, both of them have many differences as well as similarities. 

So, you can use agile when the clients do not have a clear idea of their final goal of the project because then a lot of rapid changes and flexibility will be needed throughout the whole process. Another important thing is that the whole team is adaptable to continuous edits and can think independently. 

 And the recommendations on when to use the Scrum process is when the project requirement will change and evolve. Continuous feedback from the stakeholders will be required. We will be required to deliver the product regularly with updates. Also, Scrum's process works perfectly for those projects in which there are a lot of unknown issues or that are yet to evolve. It deals with these changes very efficiently. 

Conclusion

Scrum can be a great introduction to the world of agile. It’s a lightweight framework that has some rules. Even so, people can spend their careers trying to master scrum. Any person could devote their career to learning about scrum and agile, their differences, and mastering these concepts, making their daunting tasks easy to start. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What's the relationship between Scrum and Agile?

The key difference between Agile and Scrum is that while Agile is a project management framework that follows strict rules and principles, Scrum is one of the various Agile methodologies used to facilitate a project. 

2. Is Scrum Agile?

People often think scrum and agile are the same because scrum is centered around continuous improvement, which is a core principle of agile. However, scrum is a framework for getting work done, whereas agile is a mindset. 

3. What came first, Agile or scrum?

The first paper on Scrum appeared in the Harvard Business Review in January 1986 and was put into use in 1993. Other agile processes started popping up shortly after this, but the term “agile” was first applied to Scrum and similar processes in early 2001. There was a time when agile didn’t have a name. At first, it was made from a desire to move away from traditional project management approaches that could take years to deliver a product in its entirety. In February 2001, people from different software development communities gathered to discuss how software development should evolve according to the changing needs. That summit was not another framework but a name for a collection of values and principles called Agile. Later even Scrum was classified as one of the Agile methodologies. But Scrum came 8 years before Agile. 

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