dual track Scrum in brief

Coining the term “dual track”

Desireé Sy‘s Adapting Usability Investigations for Agile User-centered Design(pdf) (2007) might be one of the first examples drawing out and labeling a process knows as dual track Scrum and stating,

Although the dual tracks depicted (…) seem separate, in reality, interaction designers need to communicate every day with developers. This is not only to ensure that designs are being implemented correctly, but also so that we have a thorough understanding of technical constraints that affect design decisions

More information on dual track

When I look up “dual track scrum” there’s a few things out there. The top hit on my search results page is a Dual-Track Scrum post from Marty Cagan & Jeff Patton.

The Discovery track is all about quickly generating validated product backlog items, and the Delivery track is all about generating releasable software. (…) the work flow is not characterized by each role delivering artifacts on to the next step; rather it is collaborative – the product manager, designer and lead engineer are working together, side-by-side, to create and validate backlog items.

There are many more first-hand experiences reported, like Fail Fast, Learn Fast, Move Fast: My UX journey to move faster from Jeremy Johnson

Dual track Scrum in brief

Dual track Scrum expands the product owner role from a single person into a team discovering the best outcomes they can to these questions:

  1. What do people want?
  2. What would make the experience better?
  3. What of that can we build with the time and budget at hand?

This Product Owner team is 3-5 people on the Scrum team that has the authority to represent for the user what is:

  1. valuable(PO, BA)
  2. usable (UX, Design)
  3. feasible (Dev, QA)

Mentored by the Product Owner team, the Scrum team works together in dual tracks of discovery and delivery to maximize outcomes while minimizing output. These continuously running parallel tracks are connected by the output of user data, prototypes and working code to prove hypotheses and validate learning. Prove that we are heading towards the right outcome, or it’s time to adjust. An outcome is change in the user behavior. Output is the work we do and is usually measured by velocity or throughput on Scrum teams.

Dual track combines User Centered Design, Lean Startup, XP and a blend of other things depending on what a team needs to keep their process and product healthy. We believe that teams should gain mastery with their own process and evaluate it’s health, knowing that together they can always change the rules of the game. And we believe that teams should own the product, feeling responsible for the performance of that product in the market.

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