What is a sprint review?
Any planned project needs a review to order to find out if the goals set before the initiation of the projects are being accomplished and whether the development of the process is in line with the final objective of the plan constructed. To assess the performance of a product development that is facilitated by a team of developers, a sprint review is conducted.
A sprint review can be understood as a performance assessment method that is used in the scrum framework to assess the development of the product. A sprint review is conducted between the scrum team including the Scrum master training and various other stakeholders to the product development.
A sprint can be described as the time frame after which the assessments take place or reviews are placed out for the developing team to gain insights about the product. The team then decides strategically about the various changes or iterations that can be employed in the development process for creating a more preferred product based on the reviews.
The review is done generally in an informal setting with the purpose of achieving feedback on the incremental progress done so far and to establish a collaboration of the parties involved in the whole process. The interview initiates with the product owner explaining the product backlog items, bringing out in the open the components that have already been developed and the items that are yet to be worked upon.
During the sprint review, the development team, on the other hand, discusses the developments during the sprint, the challenges they faced and the measures implemented to overcome the challenges during the development of the product. The entire team discusses the planning of the next stage of development so that the sprint review provides valuable input for the next sprint planning. The review also takes into consideration the market externalities that might influence product development and the changes that have taken place since the initiation.
Do we need Sprint Reviews?
After the detailed explanation of the sprint review and the whole process of conducting the assessment, the purpose should be pretty clear. In the most basic form, the purpose of the sprint review is to get feedback and approval on the development of the product in the sprint run.
Since the purpose of the sprint review is to collect feedback on what was developed in the last sprint, the sprint reviews are by a convention held at the end of the sprint. Holding a review of such vitality can be very late for many teams to act upon the insights gained during the review.
In this era of technological advancement, the saying “change is the only constant” fits perfectly in place. The frequency of changes and evolution of things due to technology is enormous, what was in trend yesterday has died already this morning such has been the pace when it comes to products or trends influenced and propelled due to technological advancement.
The development teams are severely affected by this pace of continuous change. On average they might come across five to ten changes per day, at the end of the sprint the number of new developments in place would be 5 * t changes, where t is the duration before the sprint review is conducted.
By this time with so many changes already in place, the stake holder’s feedback during the sprint review is of no significance as people have already been using such features and the ultimate response is measured by the user’s reaction. So in totality, the reviews at the end of the sprint are considered useless in this continuous changing world of technology.
What’s the alternative?
The end of the sprint review is not an answer to this question, however, there are some major changes that should be implemented if it is to prevail in this ever-changing technological landscape. The feedback should be more frequent and in small bytes so that the evolving changes can be taken into consideration in every stage of the development process.
The changes should be discussed with multiple stakeholders who have high stakes in the success of the product. A quick demo to the requestor can be facilitated by some of the team members of the developing team if the development matches the expectations of the requestor it can be considered to be progressing in the right direction.
Every new additions or iteration should be demonstrated to some of the stakeholders and demos for requestors can be facilitated based on the requirements. This one at a time feature reviews increases participation and collaboration between the developing parties and other stakeholders to this product development process, this, in turn, increases the trust among them and establishes cooperation.
One of the reasons why the sprint review cannot be totally curbed out of the equation is that it is much more than just a simple demo of the product features in development. A sprint review provides more than a demo, it is used to prioritize and restructure the product backlogs and takes into account the feedback for further enhancement of the product based on the most recent changes that have taken place which might affect the utility of this product for the ultimate customer.
In addition to accounting and taking changes into consideration, the sprint review can also help to eliminate the items of the backlog that are no longer vital to the development of the product.
A sprint review can be understood as a performance assessment method that is used in the scrum framework to assess the development of the product. Sprint reviews remain one of the significant procedure in the product development process. Since sprint reviews are done usually at the end of the sprint, there might be feedbacks that remain vital but can’t be incorporated in the product development given the growth in the process. In this ever-changing world of technology, the pace of evolution is unmatched, even in a small time frame, there are significant updates to the process. This required small and frequent reviews to facilitate product development in an efficient manner.
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