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Selling Scrum in an Orginization

Last post 10:29 am October 9, 2012 by Eric Poole
9 replies
09:40 am September 4, 2012

I am looking for some ROI calculation or business case to support the introduction of scrum practices into the company I work for. The technical and development teams immediately see hte benefits but I am having a hard time convincing the business usersated

12:23 pm September 4, 2012

Have you taken a look at "Software in 30 days"? The books is targeting Management.
Beyond that, there are a couple of case studies out there. For example, try to search for "Sentinel" - it was an FBI project that was quite successful with Scrum.

Hope that helps


07:04 pm September 4, 2012

Chad Albrecht did a great talk about the dollars and sense of scrum.
It is up on youtube, and will help put a financially focussed viewpoint to the management.


03:06 am September 5, 2012

Thanks Gents this is most helpfull

07:43 pm September 5, 2012

Hi Andre,

Dominik and Simon has given you great suggestions but I am going to give you a question. Why do you think the business people is still unconfident with Scrum?

01:05 am September 6, 2012

Hi Joshua

It is more around the change required as an orginisation the business involvment in IT projects over the years have been limited and as such there was quite a few failures as you will understand. It is a change management effort but as always there need to be numbers to back this and get the requisite buy in. We are oly introducing scrum in the orginisation now the development teams are all on board and understand the concept the problem is around getting the business to own the product owner role, I introduced the mangement teams to the concepts and the business users now need the training the investment the training now need to be motivited. From my view there is way more up than down side hence my question around how i can get the message across better

08:17 am September 6, 2012

Hi Andre,

And why do you think showing other people's number would make them more confident? Remember, it's not the number produced inside your organisation. I could just make up some random number for your managers and give it to them if you want. ;)

09:10 pm September 7, 2012

I think Steve Denning makes a good business case for Scrum in his new book -- it really targets managers.

As to the ROI, my guess is that they don't measure ROI right now, so showing them an ROI somewhere else may not help.

07:31 pm September 20, 2012

Great points! Along with another book to add to my list! :) I agree that most people that ask for ROI typically don't use it today. A simple conversation that I have found effective starts with "Why can't we just keep doing what we are doing today?" (Keep track of the responses)

10:29 am October 9, 2012

JP> Why do you think the business people is still unconfident with Scrum?

Good morning, Joshua.

This is a question to which I have yet to find a satisfactory, or even marginally satisfying answer.

Most engineering and manufacturing companies, that aren't pure "think tanks", when they envision a new project to develop a new product, have a time and cost budget in mind beyond which it is no longer time-effective or cost-effective to develop the product. Maybe they have to get it out into the marketplace by a certain time or they lose their window of opportunity. Maybe the product has to sell at or below a certain price point or no one will buy it.

Most Agile (upper-case "A") processes emphasize the time to complete the next increment (the next "sprint" or whatever one wants to call it) and don't pay much attention to how long it is projected to take to complete the whole project. Ditto costs... most Agile processes don't seem to pay significant attention to development cost targets.

So, precisely HOW is it that one convinces senior management of the benefits of Agile processes when the managers' major focus (it's in their job descriptions) is on time-to-market and cost figures?

Note the difference between "Agile" (upper-case "A") and "agile" (lower case)... I consider the former to mean a defined process that conforms to the Agile Manifesto. The latter is what most people, particularly software managers, mean when they use the term... at best, they take it to mean "anything that is faster than how we have done it before" including any of the iterative processes that have been in use for decades.

Eric Poole

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