Scrum Definition and Key Roles

A seasoned lead business system analyst with nearly two decades of experience, Anthony Freddura has served as a technical lead and senior manager of business systems analysis at Takeda in Cambridge, Massachusetts, since 2019. Anthony Freddura holds several certifications, including the Professional Scrum Product Owner from

Scrum, borrowed from the eponymous rugby team formation, is a project management framework that facilitates teamwork. Hirotaka Takeuchi and Ikujiro Nonaka introduced the term in 1986 in a Harvard Business Review paper titled The New Product Development Game. Scrum concentrates on experiential learning, team self-organization and accountability, success and failure reflection, and continuous improvement.

The scrum framework comprises tools, meetings, and roles that work harmoniously to aid teams in structuring and managing complex work. It has three key roles, product owner, scrum master, and development team.

Product owners focus on grasping a product’s business, customer, and market requirements. They act as intermediaries between the development team and its customers. Product owners prioritize work and guide the development team on which product feature to complete next.

Scrum masters serve as project facilitators and enforce best scrum practices among product owners and development teams. Then, masters seek ways to streamline processes. Scrum masters must have strong leadership, project management, and conflict-resolution skills.

Finally, the development team is a cross-section of professionals such as designers, developers, operations engineers, testers, and user experience (UX) specialists. While their skills differ, they cross-train and help one another to ensure a smooth workflow and successful project completion. An effective scrum development team is self-organizing and acts as one coherent whole.