What are the advantages of Timeboxing for the Daily Scrum?

Last post 06:38 pm September 7, 2021
by Marco Opdam
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10:38 am August 19, 2021

Hi,

I've been reading about the advantages of timeboxing in Scrum. I found that this article explained it well. Though I cannot see how those advantages apply to the Daily Scrum. Why should a Scrum Master ensure that the Developers have the Daily Scrum in the 15-minute timebox proposed by the Scrum Guide? What arguments back-up this timebox?

I feel like sometimes those few extra minutes make an important difference in the team synchronisation, especially towards the end of the Sprint when they try to organise the remaining activities to be closed, but according to the Scrum Guide 2020, the Scrum Master's responsibilities include "Ensuring that all Scrum events take place and are positive, productive, and kept within the timebox".

 

To summarise, what are the advantages of Timeboxing for the Daily Scrum?

06:32 pm August 19, 2021

The Daily Scrum is not a status meeting.  It is a planning meeting.  The Developers discuss what is needed in order to accomplish the Sprint Goal.  The 15 minute timebox is to keep the team focused on the Sprint Backlog and their ability to fulfill the Sprint Goal.  There are two statements made in the Scrum Guide section that describes the Daily Scrum that I feel are often overlooked or misunderstood.

The Developers can select whatever structure and techniques they want, as long as their Daily Scrum focuses on progress toward the Sprint Goal and produces an actionable plan for the next day of work. This creates focus and improves self-management.

The Daily Scrum is not the only time Developers are allowed to adjust their plan. They often meet throughout the day for more detailed discussions about adapting or re-planning the rest of the Sprint’s work.

The "few extra minutes" for the "team synchronisation" should be occurring real time during the day.  The Daily Scrum is an event that provides a short period of focus.  But if the Developers are working together continuously, there really shouldn't be a need for more than 15 minutes. The Daily Scrum becomes a quick gathering to make sure that all the Developers are aware of all work being done and agree on the future steps. That short timebox is plenty of time for the team to quickly discuss and agree on a plan for their work until the next Daly Scrum f the team is continuously communicating.  In fact, my experience has shown that the majority of time when a teams communicates constantly 15 minutes is too much time. 

11:43 pm August 19, 2021

I feel like sometimes those few extra minutes make an important difference in the team synchronisation, especially towards the end of the Sprint when they try to organise the remaining activities to be closed, 

There you go. Timeboxing has exposed an issue. Why is synchronisation proving more difficult for this self-managing team as the end of the Sprint approaches? This issue can be covered up by breaking one of the timeboxes, or dealt with.

01:49 pm September 7, 2021

The advantages are:
Structure, clarity and repetition.

And also: If 15 minutes is not long enough, how long will it take until you think that 30 minutes is not long enough or even 1 hour is not long enough.....