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15 years doing ScrumBut

First things first… What is Scrum?


Static View

  • The Scrum Team
    • The Product Owner
    • The Development Team
    • The Scrum Master
  • Scrum Events
    • The Sprint
    • Sprint Planning
    • Daily Scrum
    • Sprint Review
    • Sprint Retrospective
  • Scrum Artifacts
    • Product Backlog
    • Sprint Backlog
    • Increment
  • Artifact Transparency
    • Definition of “Done”

Scrum But

ScrumButs are reasons why teams can’t take full advantage of Scrum to solve their problems and realize the full benefits of product development using Scrum.

A ScrumBut has a particular syntax: (ScrumBut)(Reason)(Workaround)

  • “(We use Scrum, but) (having a Daily Scrum every day is too much overhead,) (so we only have one per week.)”

  • “(We use Scrum, but) (Retrospectives are a waste of time,) (so we don’t do them.)”

  • “(We use Scrum, but) (we can’t build a piece of functionality in a month,) (so our Sprints are 6 weeks long.)”

  • “(We use Scrum, but) (sometimes our managers give us special tasks,) (so we don’t always have time to meet our definition of done.)”

Is it worth it?

86% of projects are challenged or failed.

Waterfall is a misunderstanding from the beginning

Waterfall was supposedly “invented” by the paper “Managing the Development of Large Software Systems” by Dr. Winston W. Royce in 1970

I believe in this concept, but the implementation described above is risky and invites failure.

Mismatch between the model and the problem

Is a baby a smaller version of an adult?

In the same vein:

  • CMM was born by studying NASA, IBM, DoD
  • PMBOK was born to manage Bridge construction

Our organizations aren´t like those!!

  • (2000) TDEXA
  • (2006) OmniTI — NYC
  • (2011) SoftLogik
  • (2014) CIMAT Thesis
  • (2015) ITSZaS




  • Empresa de 5 anios
  • Sistem instaled in over 14,000 schools around the country.

+ Things we did Right and want to repeat:

  • Commited Team
  • Continuous communication with customers
  • Fulltime software developers

- Things we did wrong and want to avoid:

  • We didn´t have a mentor. (Scrum Master)
  • We didn´t use automated tools. (Continuous Integration)
  • We didn´t search for bigger markets



+ Things we want to repeat

  • Having free beer in the office
  • Experienced developers (phds) Open source contribution.
  • Profitable

- Things we want to avoid

  • Arrogance
  • Wrong use of methodologies




  • The best software company
  • Average it makes projects in 66% the time it takes their competition.
  • Wins every Government Contract it goes to. Saving the government between MXN $1M - 3M
  • The most profitable company in Zacatecas per employee.

+ Things we did right and want to do again.

  • Incubation process in Scrum (6 months)
  • We didin´t impose the methodology it Evolved from developers themselves.
  • We used automated tools for everything
    • Continuous Integration
    • Code coverage
    • unit testing

- Things we did wrong and want to avoid

  • Softlogik stopped learning… ie not being agile.
  • Top management wasn´t commited to the methodology.
  • We didn´t do Continuous Deployment




  • 100% Thesis finished on time or before time.
  • With projections and metrics.

+ Things we did well and want to keep doing.

  • We use metrics to manage the project
  • take the right corrective actions on time.

- Things we want to avoid

  • sometimes we don´t work as a team.
  • we haven´t been able to transmit the method in the whole organization.




  • Students with commitment
  • Teachers with appreciation

+ Things we want to repeat

  • Fulltime during two weeks
  • Configuration of servers to be locally available
  • Mentoring for 6 months

- Things we want to avoid

  • Part time of students and teachers
  • lack of alignment between Top Management and the Software Factory.

Common mistakes

Not using code repository?

Not using pair progamming / code reviews?

Not writing unit-tests?

Lack of automatization

  • pre-commit-hooks

not using Continuous Integration?

Changing the dates of the Sprint Review

Doing Scrum But

Doing Scrum by the book after 3 months.

Stop Learing