We are developing our organisational structure around fully autonomous Squads, similar to the model Spotify uses.

Within these Squads we use the Scrum framework, however in order to enable each squad to be autonomous we need a Product Designer in each.

The Scrum Guide does not make any reference to the Product Designers role, so I was wondering how best to integrate them into our Scrum ceremonies? If at all.

Edit: Based on Todd's advice, I will treat the Squad as a team of various skills and resources as opposed to specific roles or titles within the Squad.

1 Answer 1


Embed Skills, Not Individual Roles

Ideally, all product development resources should be intrinsically part of the Scrum Team. That makes any team member developing the product a co-equal “Developer,” regardless of variant skill sets within the team.

A product-design focused Developer should be treated as an integral part of the Scrum Team, rather than a specialized resource for the team or the project. The long-term expectation should be to include the core skills of the product design role within the selection of cross-functional team members, rather than attaching an I-shaped “one-trick pony” to the team as a solo practitioner.

If not fully embedded in the team, this person will be an external resource. This externality then impacts Sprint Planning, capacity estimates, forecasts, and story slicing. External resources often create prerequisites, dependencies, and blockers that make flow harder, so high-performing teams avoid this scenario to the maximum extent practicable within their organization.

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