What is Agile & Scrum?

Office space with two black chairs facing a glass wall covered in colorful sticky notes arranged in columns for agile planning.

Created by Jordan Muller on 2023-07-01

A Simple Guide to Understanding Scrum and Agile Methodologies

Agile and Scrum are two key concepts in the world of project management and software development. Understanding these methodologies can greatly enhance the efficiency and success of a project. In this blog post, we will delve into what Agile and Scrum are, how they differ, and why they are so important in today’s fast-paced business environment.

What is Agile?

Agile is a project management methodology that focuses on flexibility, customer satisfaction, and rapid delivery. It was developed in the early 2000s as a response to the limitations of traditional, linear project management methods like Waterfall. The core principles of Agile are outlined in the Agile Manifesto, which emphasizes individuals and interactions, working software, customer collaboration, and responding to change.

Key Characteristics of Agile:

  1. Iterative and Incremental: Agile projects are broken down into small, manageable units called iterations, which typically last a few weeks. Each iteration involves a cycle of planning, development, testing, and review, allowing for continuous improvement.
  2. Collaborative: Agile encourages close collaboration between the development team and stakeholders. Regular communication and feedback are crucial.
  3. Flexible and Adaptive: Agile is designed to embrace change, even late in the development process. This flexibility allows teams to adapt to changing requirements and market conditions.

What is Scrum?

Scrum is one of the most popular frameworks for implementing Agile. It provides a structured yet flexible way to organize a team and manage work. Scrum is particularly well-suited for projects with rapidly changing or highly emergent requirements.

Key Elements of Scrum:

  1. Roles: Scrum defines three key roles - the Product Owner (responsible for defining and prioritizing the work), the Scrum Master (facilitates the process and resolves impediments), and the Development Team (self-organizing team responsible for delivering the product).
  2. Events: Scrum prescribes a set of events, including Sprint Planning, Daily Scrum (daily stand-up meetings), Sprint Review, and Sprint Retrospective. These events foster communication and continuous improvement.
  3. Artifacts: Key Scrum artifacts include the Product Backlog (a prioritized list of features), the Sprint Backlog (items selected for the current sprint), and the Increment (the working product at the end of each sprint).

Agile vs Scrum

While Agile and Scrum are often used interchangeably, it’s important to understand that Agile is a philosophy with a set of principles, and Scrum is a specific approach to implement those principles. There are other frameworks, like Kanban or Lean, which also follow Agile principles but differ in their methodologies.

Why Agile and Scrum?

The Agile and Scrum methodologies are popular because they can significantly improve project delivery in terms of quality, speed, and adaptability. They encourage teamwork, accountability, and continuous improvement, leading to better end products and higher customer satisfaction.



Agile and Scrum are powerful tools in the world of project management. They enable teams to work more efficiently and adaptively, aligning closely with customer needs and delivering high-quality products in a shorter time frame. As businesses continue to navigate an ever-changing landscape, these methodologies will remain essential for success.