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Scrum in Action Paperback – January 21, 2011

ISBN-13: 008-2039559094 ISBN-10: 143545913X Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Cengage Learning PTR; 1 edition (January 21, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 143545913X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1435459137
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 7.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #173,102 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews Review

Features of Scrum in Action

  • Provides a practical on-the-job guidebook for project teams with actionable information for real-world situations.

  • Details solutions that can be used for any type of software projects.

  • Includes forewords by Sanjiv Augustine, author of Managing Agile Projects, and Dan Pilone, author of Head First Software Development and Head First iPhone Development.

  • Written by a highly experienced author team who are actual corporate practitioners, not just software trainers.

  • Features new techniques to resolve current issues with Scrum; details the essentials a project team needs to know in order to begin and complete a Scrum software project.

  • Solutions can be used for any type of software projects.

  • Outlines specific sections applicable by role within project groups in the "If You Are..." section of the introduction: Management Team, Project Manager, Developer, etc.


"Andrew Pham's book is an answer to the prayers of newbies to Agile/Scrum. Right from assessment techniques for your project/enterprise for agility, to guidance on implementing it - he has included, not only theoretical aspect, but also human and practical aspects. Simply put, for all the impediments he/his team faced over years he has put together a learning guide and answered for us most of the questions which we might face to start with agile transformation. A great tool for any team trying to explore the agile path!" - Sameer Bendre, Certified ScrumMaster, PMP, 3i Infotech Consulting

"I have known Andrew Pham for many years and always enjoyed learning something new from him, starting from the time I was still working under his direction at AT&T (formerly known as SBC). Andrew Pham was particularly clear then in explaining Agile and Architecture Vision to us, something he has done again with this book. For a technical book, this is a very interesting book with new ideas to look at project management or software development process in general. Very well written and a must read for those that must improve on current way of doing things and a good reference book for all in IT." - Ben Oguntona, MBA, Senior Systems Manager, AT &T

"Andrew Pham takes a different look at Scrum in this book and helps shed light on many of the questions project teams face when beginning to adopt Scrum. Andrew describes many good project management techniques on how to get the most from your project teams. Andrew also bridges the gaps between many Scrum and project management books by addressing how to communicate with executives using financial terms, how to use an objective estimation technique in lieu of the common "poker estimation", and where software architecture fits into Scrum. A good, quick read to prepare project managers on how to successfully implement Scrum." - Scott Booth, MCP, Manager Pariveda Solutions, Dallas, Texas

"The book was a concise presentation of the steps and concepts that an organization should be aware of when adopting Scrum. The company I work for is currently in our 3rd sprint of our very first Scrum project. I can't wait for the final version of this book to be released so that I can share it with the rest of my team. In many ways it was good confirmation that we are on the right track and it was a great reminder of the things that we still need to work on. The chapter on what makes a good Product Owner described almost exactly the person who is filling that role in our company. I haven't had the chance to complete the Certified Scrum Master training yet, so reading about how the Scrum Master and Product Owner work together to manage the team provided some key insight for me." - Dennis Palmer, Product Manager/Scrum Master, Esquire Innovations, Inc.

"Andrew Pham's book is a very concise reference for Agile and Scrum and is written more on a practical term than just academics. It is an easy read for the novice and advance project managers alike. The language of the book lends itself to showing the fact that the Agile and Scrum are absolutely a more natural way of looking at project management. As Andrew Pham and I had successfully led the first successful Peoplesoft package implementation at Computer City many years ago, I can recognize in this book many Scrum elements he was using then. Essentially, they were to build a good and frequent collaboration with the users, to empower the team while ensuring that they deliver on short demonstrable increments. The book definitely puts this natural progression in a more formal framework while highlighting the building flexibilities in the process. As a Senior Software Specialist having worked on small and large projects, I feel that this book is a great asset to the projects managers regardless of the size and extent of the projects." - Anwar Bardai, Senior Software Specialist, Compucom, Inc.

Customer Reviews

Scrum in Action is a must read for those new to Scrum and Agile practices.
Neerav Dalal
My team has struggled with a common definition of story points even among just our team, and from sprint to sprint the interpretation can drift.
Adam T Warner
Since this subject matter is dynamic the authors showed many real life examples and this is a must have reference book.
Benjamin Oguntona

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Gregory Johnson on January 31, 2011
Format: Paperback
I wholeheartedly recommend this book to anyone new to Agile software development. It's a fairly quick read that is both concise and thorough. It was obvious to me that the authors' grasp of the subject matter was learned through many years of practice and hard work, and the result is a book whose emphasis is on the practical application of Agile in an easy-to-understand language.

The first chapter starts with the foundation of Agile and Scrum, while the rest of the book covers a diverse range of Agile-related topics including a look at Agile from a financial perspective, obtaining management support, requirements gathering, automated testing and the importance of teamwork, to name just a few.

There's also a section of the book that works like a road map to Agile, relevant to your experience level and role, leading you through those sections of the book that will most benefit you. If you don't have time to read the whole book right away, this is an excellent way of getting the most out of the book in the shortest amount of time. I believe this is a feature that many books of this nature should incorporate as I found it a huge time-saver in the beginning.

If you're new to Agile development, feel you need a deeper understanding of it, or are just interested in learning more about Scrum/Agile, this book will give you a great foundation for success.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Tom Mellor on February 18, 2012
Format: Paperback
This book is nothing but a simple, inadequate rehash of much material already in print about the use of Scrum, some of it available online at various websites for free. Like lots of cookbook-style advisory works written by people who know little about a subject but seemingly talk a good game, it provides a simple cookie cutter approach without substance or credibility to back up its guidance and recommendations.

Many of the thoughts in the book provoke a "duh" response or simply cause those of us who know Scrum intimately and train and coach people and organizations in its use to simply roll our eyes. The author sought ought out some members in the Scrum training community to help him write this book and they declined. He sought others to review drafts of it and their responses were not supportive of the work.

There are many, many books about Scrum on the market, and many of those are written by people who have the knowledge, experience, and expertise to credibly write about the subject and provide guidance on its use. Prospective purchasers of this book would be well advised to examnine those various works (e.g. those by Cohn, Schwaber, Sims, Rawsthorne, Pichler, etc.) rather than wasting their money on this neophytic work.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By abcataldo on March 23, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Other reviews made me think this book would give me a good base before diving into the details and mechanics of working in Scrum. I was disappointed that the first few chapters threw out a bunch of terms and ideas without much focus.

Good for those who plan to focus on the project management side, not good for those of us working in the trenches trying to learn the ropes.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Adam T Warner on April 23, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a software development manager experienced with Agile development but still new to Scrum (1.5 years), I found this book highly valuable. Not only did it help to clarify some of the finer points of Scrum, but also did what few other books have done - talk about all the "other stuff" involved with managing software projects and how they should best relate to Scrum.

I found the chapter detailing a common story point assignment methodology especially helpful. My team has struggled with a common definition of story points even among just our team, and from sprint to sprint the interpretation can drift. The author details a repeatable process that not only applies consistent points to similar functionality but also accounts for factors that change over time, such as the team's familiarity with the development tools and Scrum itself.

I also found the chapters on the "other stuff" to be very insightful - "Finance Speak", "The Importance of Teamwork", and the chapters on Architectual Vision and its application throughout the Scrum life cycle. I took away several things to immediately apply. And the two case studies provided at the end of the book show the principles in use - a very nice addition.

While most useful for beginner to intermediate Scrum practicioners, even expert Scrum Masters will likely find something new and useful in this book.
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By vini on June 15, 2013
Format: Paperback
This book provides a very good overview but lacks details to really implement scrum in an organization.

Things I liked in the book: the chapter that dealt with finance details is pretty good and is a new thing you can learn from a scrum perspective. A good intro to how to calculate story points and how to do planning poker.

Things the book can improve: more clarity around the role of product owner, how the product owner can create prioritized list of backlog items, more details around acceptance criteria and definition of done. Also there is no mention of scrum of scrims and how to tackle depend its with other teams.

Bottom line, if you are looking for an overview of scrum, this is a good book. But there are some aspects of scrum details that are missing.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews

More About the Author

Andrew Pham is a Certified Scrum Master (CSM), a Certified Product Owner (CSPO), and a Certified Scrum Professional (CSP). Additionally, he is a PMP (Project Management Professional), a longtime Architect for Java Technologies certified by Sun Microsystems, and an early OOAD (Object-Oriented Analysis and Design) UML professional certified by IBM.

An elect-senior member with IEEE and member of the PMI, Andrew Pham has held top positions in project management, enterprise architecture, and software development in start-up, mid-sized and multi-billion-dollar corporations. An experienced Agile and Lean coach, Andrew has helped numerous companies successfully use Agile (Scrum) and Lean (kanban) on real-world projects as well as taught development teams both in the USA and abroad. An entrepreneur at heart, Andrew Pham is also President of Agile Enterprise Consulting, LLC, a consulting, training, and software development company. You can contact him at
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