Diving into Developer Accountabilities

March 4, 2021

You can think of the Developers as someone who does the work of developing the Product, whether it is software code, building a car, or doing research and development for a new line of consumer products. Whatever a team builds and creates, the team members are considered developers.  A Team is ideally comprised of 10 or fewer members. The three primary characteristics of Developers are that they are Cross-Functional—diverse skill sets on the Team, Self-Organizing—everyone decides what type of work they would like to do, and Self-Managing—they decide their own tasks and the order in which to accomplish them.

Traits of An Effective developer

“T-Shaped” person; someone who has deep knowledge in one or two areas, but is also skilled across multiple domains (a Specializing Generalist) and can assist the Scrum Team.

Craftsperson who is a career professional and takes pride in doing quality work.

Team player who enjoys the camaraderie of working with others on challenging problems.

An open individual who is willing to share the honest truth (the good, bad, and the ugly) of how they are doing at all times.

Someone who isn’t afraid to ask for help when they need it.

How The developers Participate In The Sprint

Developers are involved in every step of the Sprint. During the 1st half of Sprint Planning (the “What” and “Why” conversation), Developers work with the Product Owner to select Product Backlog Items from the overall Product Backlog. They select an appropriate amount of work by looking at previous work accomplished in their past sprints and select enough work to accomplish their new  Sprint Goal.

Then, during the 2nd half of Sprint Planning (the “How” conversation), the Developers create Tasks (the Sprint Backlog) from the Product Backlog Items chosen in the “What” meeting. The Tasks are all the steps necessary to take a Product Backlog Item from concept to reality (Production Ready).

After the Developers complete the Sprint Planning Meeting, they enter the heart of the Sprint, where they largely become Self-Managing and cross-functional. This means they conduct the Daily Scrum meetings with minimal assistance from the Product Owner or ScrumMaster, except, as needed, to clarify requirements and when to call a Backlog Item Done. As Developers complete Tasks from the Sprint Backlog, they update their tools and move tasks along the Scrum Board, if used. At the conclusion of the Sprint’s Timebox, the Developers accompany the Product Owner and ScrumMaster to the Sprint Review meeting. Here, the Developers give a brief demonstration of the new Product Increment and then get the Stakeholders to use the product increment and provide input and feedback to help make the Product better. Finally, the Developers conduct a Sprint Retrospective meeting where they Inspect their process and Adapt it for improved performance during the next Sprint.


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