Scrum_Guide_EN, Cancelling a Sprint?

Last post 10:21 am December 28, 2013
by Bassem Hamdi
3 replies
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06:19 am December 26, 2013

I am new in SCRUM and by reading the scrum guide, I was a little confuse about the following passage.

"Cancelling a Sprint: Page8/16; a sprint can be cancelled before the Sprint time-box is over....
Sprint cancellations consume resources, since everyone has to regroup in another Sprint Planning Meeting to start another Sprint. Sprint cancellations are often traumatic to the Scrum Team, and are very uncommon."

Intoduction: example scenario :a release includes 3 sprints ( Release 2014-Q1, Sprint_Jan, Sprint_Feb, Sprint_March). now after the first week of Feb. (within the Sprint_Feb) product owner decide to cancel the current sprint.

Question1: what will happen with the next sprint (Sprint_March)?
Question2: does The PO with cancelling current sprint also cancels the rest sprints (>= Sprint_Feb.)?

If yes then in the guide the subject is better to be changed into "Cancelling Sprint(s)" and describes that the rest sprints are cancelled as well.

If only the current sprint is affected : why we regroup Scrum Team ? and should we wait until March to start the Sprint_March to keep the fix planned sprint Timebox or we could start earlier because of shorter Sprint_Feb.?

Thanks

09:10 am December 26, 2013

> Question1: what will happen with the next
> sprint (Sprint_March)?

That would depend upon the outcome of the Sprint Retrospective, which should be held immediately in the event of a Sprint cancellation. If the PO determines that a satisfactory ROI is unlikely, another sprint may not happen at all.

> Question2: does The PO with cancelling
> current sprint also cancels the rest sprints
> (>= Sprint_Feb.)?

Sprints cannot be cancelled if they have not yet been planned. Only the current Sprint can be subject to cancellation.

10:58 am December 26, 2013

@Ian Mitchell: Thank you for your prompt and early answer. (Mehdi)

10:21 am December 28, 2013

Cancelling the sprint, go to retrospectives then sprint planning again ASAP ( no down time in between ).
If your iterations are too shorts it would be more harmful to the team's morale to cancel the sprint rather than completing it. In my experience, we had 4 weeks sprints and it was more valuable to us, to finish it rather than to cancel it ( for the sake of team cohesion, morale of the troupe). From project management perspective and budgeting , it was considered as business added value rather than client added value.