I have a team of engineers who are building a data intelligence capability for the organisation.

As such the team members are I-shaped and the work is I-shaped i.e. 1 team member can only work from 1 of the categories below. The work in each category does support the other categories in some way but its not directly linked like on for example a project building an iOS app.

I am trying to figure out how best to structure the backlog, the team and the scrum ceremonies.

The different categories of work/roles on the team are:

  • Front end type work (2 team members)
  • Architecture type work (1 team member)
  • ITOps/infrastructure type work (1 team member)

My question is should we all be doing planning sprints together, stand-ups and retrospectives etc or how should we set things up?

  • 2
    Why do you want to use Scrum? If you aren't trying to solve a common problem with a dedicated team, it seems like Scrum is a poor fit
    – Daniel
    Commented Apr 9, 2019 at 11:10
  • That is the question
    – user32613
    Commented Apr 9, 2019 at 11:13

1 Answer 1


Simple answer: You don't.

Scrum framework is a tool for a purpose. As any tool, you should know when to use it... and your case is hard to be one. It could be one if the members are willing to go beyond their siloes of knowledge, but it'll be challenging to have a proper Scrum from day one if you have clear categories within the team.

Now, what could you do?

There are other agile frameworks who could fit better for your case, as Kanban for instance. Kanban might be a better fit as it's broadly known and more fluid to have consistent work done across the different team members. You can also use some of the Scrum ceremonies, so long they are helpful. You can check for an extensive list of agile methods in Wikipedia.

How to find the best framework to fit your purpose? Experiment. You can even start applying Scrum for a few iterations, check the team perception at the retro, and propose other frameworks (or variances of known frameworks). Just do not try to make your team to fit a framework because "it's the best framework". It simply won't work.

you have to explore for the best framework - for your team.

  • Thanks for great answer. Other than Kanban and Scrum. Are there any other frameworks I should explore / experiment with?
    – user32613
    Commented Apr 9, 2019 at 12:46
  • 1
    Hi @user32613, just expanded the answer adding wikipedia link.
    – Tiago Cardoso
    Commented Apr 9, 2019 at 12:49

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