Can scrum be used effectively by SRE teams?

Last post 07:07 pm August 1, 2019
by Daniel Wilhite
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10:27 pm July 31, 2019

Site reliability engineering (SRE) teams have a combination of interrupt-driven operational work as well as planned tasks which could involve software development partly.

Scrum is meant for software development teams with a focus on a single or a small number of products.  Can it be used effectively by SRE teams?

Related question here: https://devops.stackexchange.com/q/8758/7078

03:33 am August 1, 2019

Would a team be allowed to focus on a clear goal each Sprint, of value to a Product Owner, and without stakeholders trying to change the agreed commitment?

07:07 pm August 1, 2019

Can it be used effectively by SRE teams?

Building on @Ian's great question.  Can it be used effectively?  Yes.  Is it always the right thing to do? No.  Scrum is based on continuously delivering increments of value that are potentially releasable. So, if the SRE team has that kind of work, then yes you could use Scrum.  Even if that kind of work is not all that you do.  There is nothing that says Scrum Teams have to account for 100% of their time at work. So if the SRE team can allocate some time each day to satisfy the Sprint Goal created at Sprint Planning then you can do Scrum.  But if there is no chance of their being able to work on the incremental value, Scrum is probably not the best option.

The question you linked to asks "Is scrum or kanban really useful for SRE teams?".  Sometimes Kanban is a better option for SRE teams but again that all depends on the work that they do and their ability to focus on a specific set of items for a set period of time.