The existence of clear, achievable, challenging, and valuable objectives and key results (OKR) with Scrum are points for planning iterations and deliveries, in defining tasks for execution.
Companies must have as key objectives and results that are consolidated in the intersection of business and technology, of the necessary with the possible, of the customer, leaders, and teams.
Agility in processes, higher quality of products or services, and maximum productivity in project management are the trademarks of technology companies in Silicon Valley, among many others, which adopt management methodologies different from traditional ones such as OKRs and Scrum.
The path is of negotiation for both OKR and Agile, and it is necessary for everyone to feel ownership of their objectives and consequent results. It also needs the commitment to those of the group and organization, as they will work together somehow.
A sense of team is cannot find achievement when only one of the parties takes bigger slices of profits from its results.
In this article, you will learn what is OKR and its connection with Scrum to help companies increase results.
What is OKR?
OKR stands for Objectives and Key Results and is the name of a very effective project management methodology that allows you to define clear objectives that will be accomplished through collaborative goals that will be measured regularly by key performance indicators (KPIs).
They are future achievements by the company. Objectives need to reach teams in a succinct, clear, and straightforward manner. In addition, it must motivate teams to increase results.
These are the goals to transform an objective into reality. They need to be clear, direct, feasible, and time-bound.
Acronym for Key Performance Indicator. In other words, this is an indispensable metric to assess how what really matters is performing. So the KPIs vary according to the objectives and key results and serve to keep the focus when measuring.
A team has a maximum of 3 months to reach results. Moreover, these tactical goals link to the operational goals and they must bring faster outcomes.
It is a long-term goal. You will have a maximum of 1 year to get efficient results. Strategic goals are more complex because it breaks into various tactics that you can execute with viable goals.
Features of the OKR methodology
- Focus on priorities and commitment
- Teamwork with key objectives
- Departments from a company with strategic objectives
- Constant monitoring of the evolution of each goal
- Measurement by KPIs
- Allows tracking of responsibilities
- Collaborative management
- Increase productivity
What is Scrum?
Scrum allows for continuous and valuable delivery to customers due to greater agility in processes.
Initially, this methodology was just a framework for extremely agile software development.
Scrum is the agile methodology that allows each employee to use their skills with the rest of the teams, to achieve common goals.
How Scrum works in project management
The entire methodology relies on the collaboration of the Product Owner (customer) who participates by informing the Scrum Master, who is in charge of the Scrum Team that is formed by the work teams, of what is a priority.
It is also responsible for guiding all Members to carry out the best practices to streamline the project and thus make continuous deliveries of value to the Product Owner.
It is the starting point of projects that are repeated every month or 15 days (depending on the cycle defined by the company).
It is up to the Scrum Master to create tasks for the Scrum Team in the Sprint Backlog from them. Which is critical to ongoing value delivery.
It is a list of tasks on the Product Owner’s priorities that need to reach each member of the Scrum Team within a specified period. Each Sprint has a cycle of up to 4 weeks so the activities need to be delegated with deadlines that allow all collaborators to execute them until the end of the Sprint.
- Greater agility in project management
- Continuous value delivery to the customer
- Considerably reduces the impacts of bottlenecks in production and helps to prevent them
- Sprints with a maximum duration of 1 month
- More quality services or products
- Project management with less risk
- Makes it easy to analyze the progress of the project as a whole.
- more proactive company
- Increase productivity
Why Scrum and OKRs can help with productivity
Although with different forms of execution, Scrum and OKR have the same goal: to ensure delivery of value to the customer through more agile project management with more effective teamwork.
What kind of enhance can help the association of the two methodologies?
Remember that Scrum works with the Product Owner’s priorities, but does not include the definition of clear goals for the team.
Therefore, implementing OKRs can complement it by adding even more agile and continuous value deliveries. And still motivating the team.
OKR empowers the team
In some companies, the Product Owner is called Proxy Owner as he/she simply takes and brings back the list of features that were prioritized by the board. How can we give him/her the mandate to manage the product? How can we be sure the team has autonomy?
If the team’s role is to deliver the features that the client/management wants this will never happen. The mindset has to be the role of the team is to achieve the success criteria of the Key Results and agreed with the client/management.
OKR helps prioritize the product backlog
Even though you must focus on delivering business results, you still need to prioritize the product backlog.
But how do we expect the Product Owner to do this? She/he needs to use perceived value as the criterion, but this is still subjective. OKR may be the missing piece, a simple and clear framework to decide which features to work on.
Focus on results
Creating a culture focused on results is a common premise of both methodologies. Companies, in general, develop their projects and operations towards a greater objective. To disseminate the purpose, it is vital that companies invest in precepts such as communication, strategic alignment, and transparency, elements that make up the essence of agile methods.
The effectiveness of OKRs and projects is enhanced when we believe in the ability to carry them out, to stimulate the feeling of engagement.
The role of OKR and Scrum for many companies’ business transformation
Many businesses faced many changes with the uprising of new business types. It happens because of high-speed technological progress that allows a dynamic economy in permanent change.
Some companies increase with competitiveness when they look for faster processes and better resource management.
Companies use techniques, devices, and methodologies that increase business management qualities. And OKR and Scrum have been part of increasing results for companies that need instant directions.
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