What does a development team do and what are the differences between development teams in V-Modell XT and Scrum?
The joint implementation of products
A development team is a group of people who jointly implement a product. Most development teams consist of employees of a company. In the case of cooperations or joint ventures, they can also come from different organisations. How a development team is structured and how it works together strongly depends on the approach chosen and the associated mindset.
The development team in V-Modell XT
The German V-Modell XT defines numerous roles within a development, such as
- hardware architect, hardware developer, software architect and software developer,
- configuration management administrator and configuration management manager,
- logistics developer, system architect, system integrator and auditor.
For each role, there is a formal role description that covers a maximum of five points: Tasks and authority, skill profile, role assignment, accountability and involvement. To enable smaller projects and developments to be carried out with V-Modell XT, employees may assume more than one role, provided there is no conflict of interest.
The development team in Scrum
Scrum, on the other hand, does not distinguish between roles in the development team at all. The Scrum Guide does not define any hierarchy, all team members of a Scrum development team are developers without exception. This essentially pursues two goals: Decisions should be made on the basis of technical criteria. And the responsibility lies with the team and not with individual team members. The tasks that a Scrum development team takes on are clearly defined:
- It evaluates the feasibility and effort of backlog items in sprint planning, decides on the scope of the sprint backlog and commits itself to a common sprint goal.
- It delivers a potentially deliverable increment at the end of each sprint, taking into account the definition of done.
- It communicates with each other, with the Scrum Master and with the Product Owner in the Daily Scrum about the progress of the sprint. The sprint goal serves as orientation. Obstacles – the so-called impediments – on the way to the sprint goal are communicated and ideally removed (also with the help of the Scrum Master).
- In the Sprint Review it presents the realised backlog items or the increment.
- In the retrospective it tries to optimise its procedure for the next sprint.
Even if Scrum does not define explicit roles for the development team, the team members ideally have different skills and knowledge. The performance of the team depends significantly on the combination of these skills. If an employee does not have the required knowledge, the team as a whole is challenged to support him or her in the job and to expand his or her skills. The Sprint goal can only be achieved together.
In the Scrum Guide version of November 2017 it is made clear that Scrum is not only suitable for software development, but also for product development in general. Thus Scrum addresses the same objects – software, hardware, systems – as the V-Modell XT. The main difference lies in the self-organisation and self-responsibility of the Scrum development team and the resulting agile mindset.