Scrum framework became an essential requirement for managing complex projects and daily functions in a business environment.
You require powerful tools to assist a team to achieve their goals. Using human intelligence was what we are used to counting on when taking business decisions or organizing workload. But when it comes to choosing the right master software for our business environment choosing the right business tools is something which became unavoidable the last 2 decades, especially in commodity trade industry.
This is the reason today why software products evolve with the speed of light and bring new management solutions to companies. In this pattern, an agile framework like Scrum develops and becomes essential in businesses with complicated functions and divergent departments. When you have to manage daily logistics transactions, manage your trading risks, take management decisions or monitor your product efficiency, then you’d better make a wise consideration of what software you choose for your company.
When it comes to CTRM systems, the complexity of functions increases. The company’s needs in software terms are different when you trade coffee, for example, or other materials like metals. Back in 1986, Hirotaka Takeuchi and Ikujiro Nonaka introduced the term of scrum in their “New Product Development Game” article, published in Harvard Business Review. With this article they highlight a new way for increasing speed and flexibility in building software products. They called it Scrum.
Agile software development
In order to explain what scrum is, we should first have a better idea what agile product development is. Agile software development is a set of virtual assets and techniques founded under the Agile Manifesto. It includes solutions, which develop collaborative efforts in adaptive planning, self-organizing, early product development and delivery and continuous improvement. Also, it supports the speed and flexibility in terms of change.
Now that we have a better idea of agile development, let’s move to our main topic: scrum. Scrum is an agile framework for fulfilling multiplex business projects. It benefits the end users who use a software product with a scrum development framework in many ways. It offers them solutions in prioritizing large to-do lists, manages teamwork and communication and of course brings faster responses to changes.
Let’s explain a scrum methodology with 4 clear and easy steps:
1. PRODUCT BACKLOG
Software product owners organize a prioritized wish list according to customer needs. This is the product backlog.
2. SPRINT PLANNING
In that stage the product development team make decisions on how to implement changes and improvements of certain pieces on that wish list, in a specific time-frame (normally within two to four weeks). During the whole process a Scrum Master retains the team’s focus on the goal.
3. SPRINT BACKLOG
This is actually the wish list with all tasks for improvements and changes. It is called Sprint Backlog. The team after planning completes every sprint in a priority order. Every time they chose to work with one sprint, complete the work and have the work ready to be shipped to customers.
4. POTENTIALLY SHIPPABLE PRODUCT
Each sprint terminates with a sprint review and retrospective. Then the next sprint begins and each time, after the certain working time, the implementations are ready and delivered to users.
Why scrum is important when developing a CTRM software?
Building business software nowadays might not seem a big challenge with all these innovative methods. We can’t disagree that, each software product is different and satisfies different needs depending on the industry. However, when your product has to offer solutions to existing difficulties in commodity trade industry, then things start becoming a bit tricky.
In the commodity trade industry so far, teams used to organize their workload with traditional ways. Paperwork, tons of printed documentation and Excel sheets with countless records. Even when they started implementing software solutions, like CTRM, still they couldn’t find their “promised land”. Someone could say that this was because CTRM software is something really new and still is adapting to reality. The truth lies, though, in the whole architecture of a CTRM software solution.
Waterfall vs. Agile
Traditional Commodity Trade and Risk Management software solutions were using the so-called “Waterfall model” in their development. This linear approach of project management proved to underlie a lot of issues in the process, making the product cumbersome in adjustment.
However, the newest agile method, scrum, creates strong foundation for effective processes in product development. It shields the CTRM software with immediate flexibility and tested functionality. By using an agile Commodity Trade and Risk Management software solution for your business, you simply come closer to your company’s goals faster.
When your team decides that it is time to implement a software solution to organize your trading procedures, financial and logistics transactions, then you need a second and third time in order to make the right and “agile” choice.