Agile methodology is a movement that proposes an effective and efficient work format for software development. It ensures progressive learning and continuous improvement of processes and people., such as a designer.
It is important to remember that agility in this context does not mean simply speed, it presupposes getting to the right place (hitting the target) within the shortest possible time.
In this article, you will see how designers can use a scaling scrum to increase performance and productivity.
Scrum is an agile methodology for software development that uses the values and principles of the agile manifesto to create your work dynamics.
It is one of the most widespread methodologies and widely used to exemplify the concepts of this methodology.
In summary, Scrum follows a flow that starts from a Product Backlog (basically a list of things to develop) removing from that list the items that will be developed in pre-defined cycles.
These predefined cycles are called Sprint and usually last 2-4 weeks.
Within this period, the team meets daily to tell how the development is going and adjust any problems that are happening.
At the end of the Sprint time, the team delivers the items and can get new ones from the Product Backlog.
Designer and the Scrum process
Since a sprint will focus on the creation and implementation of a product, which requires extensive coding, you might be wondering how can design and development work hand in hand using Scrum? Wouldn’t they need to have all the UI assets and information before they can code?
The Product Owner will have created user stories for the developers on the team. If one of those user stories is ‘create login page’ then the developers will need to have all the requirements and assets like prototypes needed for those particular user stories.
To get around it, UI and UX design should work ahead of any sprint cycle. Before a developer begins to work on a user story, that user story has to be designed, tested, and researched weeks if not months in advance.
If the developer doesn’t have all of this information at their disposal, it’s unlikely that they’ll be able to complete the work in a 2 week or 4-week sprint.
The sprint relies on these elements being done in advance and as a result, they can’t be done concurrently with development.
The designer’s profile and his role in the team
The UX Designer can transit and collaborate in several product teams. With a wider profile, it is possible to act from the realization of research with users and validation of hypotheses, through the architecture and design of interfaces, to development.
In this last step, even not writing the code, this professional uses the notions of logic and programming language to propose technically viable solutions you can practice within the stipulated deadlines.
To showcase the importance of this role in the agile team, there are some perceptions of some collaborators:
- For Developers, Designers bring the needs of real users from discovery and prototyping techniques, allowing more complete solutions. In addition, they help to understand the details facilitate the understanding of business flows. Also, contribute to technical decision-making related to the front-end and back-end. Because through the design system it is possible to have the vision required to ensure consistency across products lifecycles.
- For Product Owners and Product Managers, Designers balance actions focused on simplifying and streamlining ideas that the PO or PM may have to ensure that deadlines you can deliver. Designers help to think not only about what the client asks, but what the people who will use the solution need. It increases the chances of the product’s success and saves the efforts of the team as a whole.
- For Test and Quality Analysts, working together with Designers contributes to the identification of usage scenarios.
Shared responsibility and a common mindset
Here at Soft, customers greet with the following question: what problem are we trying to solve?
This question answers from the journey of discoveries, which arise when we combine technology, design, and business. For this reason, it is important to unite professionals with different backgrounds and experiences, enabling effective and complete solutions.
Therefore, the responsibility to promote a good experience is not tied to just one person. Since the creative process for solving problems to practice among all team members, including clients.
Therefore, it is up to the designer’s role to collaborate with in-depth knowledge. Also, the application of the different disciplines that include UX in the team’s routine.
How UX Designers Work
It is through the harmony between form, function, and context that UX Designers act. Investigating, validating hypotheses, identifying scenarios, mapping journeys, and materializing possible interactions through the interface.
It is only through the connection of all these elements that we can truly place the human being at the center of everything. And, finally, offer a good user experience.
To generate value, designers participate in activities both in the strategic, tactical, and operational spheres. It identifies opportunities and promotes improvements and good experience practices.
The entire team engages and develops solutions with this “designer thinking”. So, it is possible to cross the line between developing a project and building a product or service digital with quality.
Where Design Fits in Agile Scrum Methodology
At the beginning of the project, to help define the initial backlog using, for example, a Design Sprint. This Design Sprint you can understand as a cycle with a pre-defined period where design activities to build a concept.
When loading the term Sprint, this cycle also inherits the same characteristics as Scrum, for example. In other words, in a Design Sprint, there are meetings, established roles. Also, tasks performance can even be on a specific work board.
The difference is that during this period, you can only test prototypes and concepts with customers.
Another way to unite design with agile methodologies like Scrum is to place design tasks. Mainly UX and Visual, within the Scrum Team’s framework as specific activities.
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