What Comes Next After Scrum?
Since I first started working with Scrum in 2005, I have wondered what would eventually come along to replace it. Scrum has now been around for over 25 years, so surely something else would emerge? Approaches including Lean, Kanban, DevOps have appeared and grown popular, but they have not displaced Scrum as the most widely used approach to increase agility.
The usage of Scrum has continued to grow. Entire industries including Banking, Insurance and Pharma have adopted Scrum. Over the last 5 years, more organisations are seeking to use Scrum beyond software. I am now regularly helping Leadership, Marketing, Sales & HR teams as well as continuing to help those with an IT/software focus. Scrum has grown far beyond its software origins.
I have come to realise that Scrum is here to stay. The need to use an empirical approach to solve complex problems is increasing. A move to working in an experience and evidence-based way is becoming essential for organisations to remain competitive. Organisations need to improve their ability to deliver value and adapt fast in ever-changing environments. The global disruption caused by COVID-19 has further emphasised the need to be able to embrace change whilst managing risk in complex and unpredictable environments.
In my classes, I often talk about Scrum being a 21st-century approach to managing complex work. In the 20th century, when organisations were less customer-centric and more of the work was simple or complicated, traditional management approaches worked well and were often seen as the only way to work.
That started to change with the computing revolution. The emergence and rapidly increasing importance of computers, software, the Internet, the World Wide Web, mobile devices and other new technology have changed almost everything. The world is a more complex place and organisations need to learn how to deal with this increased complexity in order to survive & thrive.
More organisations are now waking up to the reality that 20th-century approaches are not best suited for handling the complex challenges of the 21st century. I believe that Scrum & Agile will be here for some time. Many organisations still need to learn how to harness it, and for some, that transition will take years or even decades. There is still a long way to go and much work to be done.
Hi, my name is Simon Kneafsey and I am a Professional Scrum Trainer with Scrum.org & TheScrumMaster.co.uk. I am on a mission to simplify Scrum for a million people. I have helped over 10,000 people so far and I can help you too.