Disciplined Agile Extends Scrum

Written by Kaushik Saha, Certified Disciplined Agile Coach (CDAC)

Many people focus on Scrum process framework when they talk about Agile because of several reasons:

  1. Scrum is a lightweight method
  2. Scrum is an improved process framework
  3. Scrum is a very focused approach and event-driven
  4. Scrum is easy to understand

But we must extend beyond Scrum wherein agile can be implemented in lean way and the Scrum could be one approach for the execution the construction phase.  Disciplined Agile Delivery (DAD) takes a “hybrid” approach and beginning-to-end approach that extend Scrum’s Construction lifecycle to explicitly address the full delivery lifecycle.  Disciplined Agile calls out three light-weight phases:

  1. Inception –> Inception is a pre-Sprint phase in terms of Scrum which can talk about envisioning and planning where you  develop a common vision with stakeholders ; initial release planning; initialize the environment and infrastructure; identify initial risks; and adopt a goal-driven, non-prescriptive approach to development.
  2. Construction –> During Construction the team incrementally and iteratively builds business value in the form of a potentially shippable, or better yet consumable, solution each iteration.
  3. Transition –> During Transition you ensure that the solution is ready to be shipped and then ship it.

 Comparing Scrum and DAD:

  1. Scrum delivery is focuses on “working software” but DAD goes further for a “complete end-to-end solution“.
  2. Scrum is prescriptive, but DAD is pragmatic.
  3. DAD is easily tailored.
  4. Scrum focuses only on “Construction” phase; but DAD includes Inception. Construction, and Transition phases.
  5. Scrum is targeted from single team to multiple teams. DAD goes further to be scalable at both the tactical and strategic levels.
  6. Scrum is one approach process framework, but DAD is a Hybrid Framework that includes several lifecycles:  Agile (Scrum-based), Lean (Kanban-based), Continuous Delivery:Agile, Continuous Delivery: Lean, Exploratory (Lean Startup), and Program (team of teams).

The DAD Approach brings Agile and Lean Practices under one umbrella:

  • DAD applies Lean development principles to enable scaling, wherein system can be optimized as whole by eliminating non-value added activities and build the quality inside with amplifying learning.
  • DAD also adopts visualization of Kanban workflow to measure & manage flow of work by limiting work-in-progress.
  • DAD’s Agile lifecycle applies the Scrum process framework in the Construction phase.
  • DAD brings XP engineering practices in the Construction phase to reduce feedback cycle and develop quality code faster.


Have any Question or Comment?

6 comments on “Disciplined Agile Extends Scrum

Vyom Bharadwaj

Nice article!! DAD brings with it a lot much more -more flexibility , more agility, a lot leaner approach.

Rahul Bisawa

Very informative and easy to understand. Thanks for sharing.

Rohit Joshi

A well written and informative article on Disciplined Agile Delivery (DAD).

Ramanathan Yegyanarayanan

Nice article, where even a person with no knowledge on DAD can understand it basics well.

Amit Chakraborty

Nice article. Captures the essence of DAD quite elaborately.

Viji Menon

Wonderful articulation and a quick ride to DAD also. Simple.and easy to understand


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