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PMBOK® guide versus SCRUM mastery – points of convergence and divergence.

The agile project management approach known as Scrum has been touted in the field’s literature as a silver bullet for solving time-to-market and project quality problems. This paper examines how one information technology (IT) department within a financial services organization adopted Scrum to improve their time-to-market project performance, an effort that was driven and supported by the organization’s leadership. In doing so, it overviews the IT department’s experience in shifting from a traditional, prescriptive approach informed by the PMBOK Guide to a more flexible process, noting how the integration of these two systems enabled the department to more effectively meet their company’s formal project planning, controlling, communicating, and reporting requirements. It then explains the foundations of both the PMBOK Guide and the agile and Scrum process, describing the similarities (the points of convergence) and the differences (the points of divergence) in the philosophies informing these processes. It also summarizes the primary lessons the authors learned from their experience in integrating Scrum into their project management-oriented department.

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