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Budget Review after a Sprint

Last post 03:18 pm September 19, 2022 by Ian Mitchell
3 replies
05:30 am September 19, 2022

I am just curious to confirm if budget can be reviewed to accommodate changes in scope after a sprint without a change budget. I had a discussion with someone who told me that since there is no scope creep in SCRUM due to the flexibility of scope changes at any point in time before deployment, budget can be reviewed to accommodate such changes. If this is true, what is the process for change management in Scrum? 

11:02 am September 19, 2022

The budget is something that can be discussed at the Sprint Review, between the Scrum Team(s) working on the product and the key stakeholders in attendance. It could be useful to consider topics like the budget and key dates, since these can influence how the Product Backlog Items should be ordered to maximize the value that the team delivers before a specific date or while there is still sufficient funding for the team to work. This was explicitly called out in the July 2013 through the November 2017 versions of the Scrum Guide but was removed from the November 2020 release.

Change management is inherent in the Scrum framework, primarily through the Sprint Planning and Sprint Review, but also in the goal-oriented nature of the Sprint. Because the planning horizon is at most 1 month, the key stakeholders and/or Product Owner can provide feedback, add new work, or remove existing work from the Product Backlog and have the next increment consider those changes. On top of that, because the team is committing to a goal and not a fixed body of work, the team is able to have some flexibility in exactly what work they do during a Sprint, as long as the goal is satisfied by the end of the timebox.

With a stable team over an extended period, the bulk of the budget is also stable. The decisions are about what goals or objectives the team should be working to satisfy next, as captured in the Product Goal and Sprint Goal. The key stakeholders are regularly providing feedback on what the next small step, or the next goal, should be, and direction can change as frequently as necessary. One factor to consider when choosing an appropriate Sprint length is the stability of stakeholder needs and the stability of the environment, since Sprint length determines how rapidly a team can readjust to changing circumstances, such as scope or budget.

01:23 pm September 19, 2022

Thank you Thomas. 

03:18 pm September 19, 2022

If this is true, what is the process for change management in Scrum? 

Build, measure, and learn. That's how. Scrum is about mastering empiricism, through which a team learns to build the right thing at the right time. That's what Sprints are for: they are inspect-and-adapt cycles. Change management, as an ongoing process of innovation, is baked in as part of the deal.

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