Scrum can be considered the most popular method of implementing agile patterns among small companies and software teams, especially startups.
Software development agility is said to be a collection of techniques and patterns that aim to develop software in rotational periods and interact between the software development team and the business sector for the development of a more functional software.
The fast growth of startups in Iran has induced many startups to use these agile methods to enhance their performance. For the past 5 years, startups have started to learn more about the functionality of these methods and have tried them in different patterns, from Scrum to PRINCE 2.
One of the main reasons that we see the growth of using the agile methods among Iranian startups is the employment of these methods by big tech companies and startups such as Google and Spotify. For example, the details of Google’s work can be found in books such as “How Google Works”, which explains how this company benefits from these approaches, and so startups have also started to research and use them.
Also, there are some institutions that are helping startups to understand the truth of agile methods by organizing private sessions or events.
In Iran, many small-scale startups lack the knowledge of new software development methods through collaborative methods, however bigger companies manage to keep themselves adapted to the new techniques.
We can give the example of startups such as Alibaba.ir and Cafe Bazar which are doing a good job by testing the various methods of Agile and Scrum to reach their own best practice of these methods by training and enhancing team-work.
Events with the subject of teaching Scrum & Agile methods are also held in different cities of Iran and we can give the example of events by Iran Scrum Institute (Scrum.ir) which are held since 2012.
Asad Safari, Founder of Iran Scrum Institute, said: “We feel that both Scrum and Agile methods exit [in Iran] from their early adopter stage and are reaching (and even passing) the majority stage.”
He added: “We, in Iran, just copy the appearance that we see in successful Silicon Valley startups like Google and we think that by bringing swings and slides to our company we can reach to the highest levels, same as the thing that happened to Scrum & Agile. A lot of companies have task boards and beautiful sticky notes, but they forget about the main points, which are teamwork, interactions and also training.”
Another challenge to Scrum implementation is team interactions. The team members often look at Scrum as a series of time-consuming instructions that are only a hindrance to doing the job of their own choosing, which is merely a way for project managers to do their job more effortlessly and have more control over the team.
“This can be fixed by continuous training. For example, if you have daily stand-up meetings with your team and everyone hates it, you can change its way so everyone can adapt and love it. You can change its time or convert it to a breakfast session. You can practice the new training for a short time and see its result, as some Iranian governmental organizations such as state-owned banks are doing it,” Safari added.
Also, the role of a scrum master is becoming more significant in Iranian startups and we’re seeing companies posting positions for scrum masters. According to TechTarget, a scrum master is a facilitator for an agile development team.
To wrap up, Scrum or other agile methods are not a magic formula that can automatically solve your problems and make your work progress in a surprisingly good way. Also always keep in mind that there is never a proper instruction for all teams. To find the right solution, you need to know your team, your expectations and goals well, and then act. By training, you can reach the highest level of agility in your team.