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Scrum Master Interview Questions

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Did You Know?

  1. At least 80% of the teams in an agile setting have been revealed to be using some sort of Scrum. 
  2. In a 2021 report, Africa ranked number 1 in the agile culture score with 79%, while their European counterparts could only manage around 50%.
  3. A McKinsey survey revealed that companies that had adopted agile practices before COVID-19 outperformed the ones that hadn’t.

Frequently Asked Scrum Master Interview Questions

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Several major companies such as Google, Apple, Philips, etc. are looking for professionals in Scrum Master. This Scrum Master Interview Questions blog is compiled for you to prepare yourself for a job interview and grab a lucrative job in this field. So, prepare the following set of Scrum Master questions and answers and build a successful career in it.

Check out this video on What is Agile Methodology:

Basic Scrum Master Interview Questions

1. What do daily stand-up meetings entail?

Each day, at a specific time and at a specific place (in front of the task board), the team meets to share updates about their tasks and tickets resolved for the day. This meeting addresses Scrum’s three questions listed below.

  • What have you completed since the last meeting?
  • What do you plan to complete by the next meeting?
  • What is getting in your way?

2. Explain the product backlog in Scrum.

Before the Scrum sprint initiates, the product owner reviews the list of all new features, change requests, enhancements, and bug reports and determines the priority. If the project is new, it includes new features that the new system must provide. This list of items is referred to as a product backlog. The items that are kept on the sprint are referred to as sprint backlog.

3. What is a release candidate?

A release candidate is a build or version of software that can be released to production. Further, testing such as UAT may be performed on this version of the product.

4. What are the most important components of Agile?

The key features of agile are:

  • Daily stand-up meetings
  • CRC (Class Responsibility Collaborator) cards
  • Timeboxed task boards
  • TDD (test-driven development), continuous integration, regular code reviews, pair programming, continuous deployment and delivery, automated builds, etc.
  • Iteration planning meetings and iterative development

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5. Define an Agile.

Agile represents a software framework encompassing a set of behaviors and approaches that promote the timely development of software, thereby facilitating the prompt delivery of high-quality software to customers.

6. List out the Agile frameworks.

There are a few other frameworks in addition to Scrum, such as:

  • Test-Driven Development
  • Kanban
  • Feature-Driven Development

7. How long does the scrum cycle run?

The life of the Scrum cycle varies on the project size and team size. The team size may depend on 3 to 9 members. Generally, it takes 3 to 4 weeks to complete a Scrum sprint. 

If you want to know the difference between Agile and Waterfall in-depth, check out this Agile vs Waterfall!

8. What are the similarities and differences between Agile and Scrum?

Similarities between Agile and Scrum: 

Agile involves completing projects stepwise or incrementally. The Agile methodology is considered to be iterative in nature. Being a form of Agile, Scrum shows similarities with Agile. It is also incremental and iterative.

Differences between Agile and Scrum:

Agile has a wide bandwidth; it is a methodology used for project management, while Scrum is just a variant of Agile that defines the flow and its steps more concisely. Agile is a practice and process, whereas scrum is a procedure to pursue this practice.

If you want to know the difference between DevOps and Agile in-depth, check out this DevOps vs Agile!

9. What is the time period of the Scrum?

Usually, the duration of a scrum sprint (scrum cycle) depends upon the size of the project and the team working on it. The team size may vary from 3-9 members. In general, a scrum script is completed in 3-4 weeks. On average, the time period of a scrum sprint (scrum cycle) is 4 weeks.

Scrum Master Interview Questions for Intermediate

10. What are the project management tools used in Agile?

Agile has a new breed of Project Management tools including Rally Software, VersionOne, XPlanner, EasyBacklog, IceScrum, Agilefant, and Agilo. These tools bear no resemblance to the waterfall PM tools like MS Project or Clarity.

11. How can storyboard be defined in Agile?

A storyboard is a visual representation of a software project’s progress. There are generally four columns, namely, ‘To do’, In Progress’, ‘Test’, and ‘Done’. Different colored post, its notes are placed in each column indicating the progress of individual development items. A storyboard is typically used in Agile development.

12. How much time should a person expect to spend on Scrum Master activities?

A Scrum Master should make this role their top priority to focus on the benefits of the overall Scrum team. Their load will vary from sprint to sprint depending on what impediments and issues the team is dealing with. Newly formed teams typically take more Scrum Master time, 50–100 percent; while experienced Scrum Masters with established well-functioning teams might spend 50 percent or less time on the Scrum Master role.

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13. What qualities should a good Agile Tester have?

  1. Agile Testers should be able to understand the requirements quickly.
  2. They should know Agile concepts and principles.
  3. As requirements keep changing, Agile Testers should understand the risk involved in it.
  4. Agile Testers should be able to prioritize the work based on the requirements.
  5. Communication skills are a must for Agile Testers as they are required to constantly communicate with developers and business associates.

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14. Mention some of the Agile quality strategies.

Some of the Agile quality strategies are as follows:

  • Iteration
  • Refactoring
  • Dynamic code analysis
  • Short feedback cycles
  • Reviews and inspection
  • Standards and guidelines
  • Milestone reviews

15. How do we understand that we are using Agile development?

It will be understood that we are using Agile development when we are utilizing a time-boxed task board, test-driven development, daily stand-up meetings, pair programming, and many more. 

16. Explain the Zero Sprint in Agile.

A Zero Sprint can be stated as the pre-step to the first sprint. Things such as setting up the environment to develop, preparing backlog, etc., need to be performed before the start of the initial sprint and can be treated as Sprint Zero.

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17. List the challenges involved in developing Agile Software.

The various challenges involved in developing Agile Software include:

  • More testing and customer involvement
  • Effects management comparatively more than developers
  • Every feature needs to be performed before jumping on to the next.
  • All the set of the code has to work fine to ensure the application is in a working state.
  • More strategic planning is required.

18. Explain the different roles in Scrum.

The three scrum roles, i.e., Scrum Master, Product Owner, and Team, explained with the details of a few primary responsibilities of each role are as follows:

  • Product owner: A product owner is a prominent stakeholder in the project. He represents the project requirements before the team. He is responsible for having a vision of what to build and conveying his detailed vision to the team. He is the initial point of an agile scrum software development project.
  • Scrum team: Scrum team is established by the collective contribution of individuals who perform for the accomplishment of a particular project. The team is bound to work for the timely delivery of the requested product.
  • Scrum Master: Scrum Master is the leader and coach for the scrum team, who monitors whether the scrum team is executing committed tasks properly. He is also responsible for excelling in the efficiency and productivity of the team so that they can achieve the sprint goal effectively.
If you want to know the difference between Agile and Scrum in-depth, check out this Agile vs Scrum!

 Scrum Interview Questions for Experienced

19. What is difference between Epic, User Stories, and Tasks?

  • An Epic is a group of related user stories.
  • User Stories define the actual business requirements. They are generally created by the business owner.
  • Task: To accomplish the business requirements, the development team creates tasks.

20. How is the velocity of sprint measured?

If capacity is measured as a percentage of 40 hours weeks, then completed
= story points * team capacity
If capacity is measured in man-hours, then completed story points/team capacity.

21. How does the Agile testing (development) methodology differ from other testing (development) methodologies?

Testers (developers) ensure that the whole process of testing (development) is broken down into as small steps as possible, and just a small unit of code is tested (developed) in each of these steps. The team of testers (developers) consistently communicates the results of their work and changes the short-term strategy and even the development plan on the go, based on the results of the agile testing. The agile methodology encourages a flexible and rapid response to change, which leads to better end results.

Go through the Misconceptions about Agile and DevOps to clearly understand of misconception between Agile and DevOps!

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If you have any doubts or queries related to DevOps, get them clarified from DevOps experts on our Agile Community.

22. Explain velocity in Agile.

Velocity is a metric that is calculated by the addition of all effort estimates associated with user stories completed in one iteration. It predicts how much work Agile can complete in a sprint and how much time it will require to complete a project.

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23. What are the biggest challenges you have faced in your project while handling the Scrum team members?

The better you assemble your challenges performing in agile, the better they will be. Challenges usually encountered in the starting stages of scrum are stabilizing the velocity, team members’ conflicts, sticking to time-boxing, and many more.

24. Define what a product roadmap means.

A product roadmap defines the holistic view of product features, which creates the product vision.

25. List out any agile certifications.

Agile and Scrum certifications are trending in the market, and organizations are expecting candidates to get certified. Agile Certifications and Scrum Certifications are usually preferred by organizations and are listed as follows:

  • ASM (Agile Scrum Master)
  • CSM (Certified Scrum Master)
  • ACP (Agile Certified Practitioner)
  • PSM (Professional Scrum Master)
  • Safe Agilist

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26. How significantly can quality analysts add value to an agile team?

Quality analysts provide additional significant value to the story by thinking broadly and differently about distinct scenarios. It provides quick feedback to the developers on any issues caused while working with any of the features.

If you want to know what are the top certificates in Agile, check out this top Agile certification!

27. Mention some methodologies and developments that use the Agile model.

Some of the developments and methodologies where the Agile model can be used are as follows:

Scenario-Based Scrum Master Interview Question

28. What is the appropriate course of action when a team member fails to keep up with their assigned tasks for a sprint?

It’s likely your candidate will face this at some point or another in their career, and it’s their job as Scrum Master to keep everything in check. They require the capability to be considerate while also figuring out a fix for the issue so the task can be completed successfully and on schedule.

29. What actions would you take if your product owner were an individual who required instruction in the principles of scrum, thus resulting in a lack of interest in scrum meetings?

If a situation arises wherein the product owner is inexperienced in the role of Scrum Master, he may be required to be more focused on the Scrum meeting. In this case, we will follow certain appropriate steps:

  • We can connect with the product owner and let him understand the instructions of Scrum and how much of his attention is responsible for managing the end-to-end product development. 
  • Doing collaborative work with the product owner in the starting sprints and creating product backlogs, upcoming sprint plans, and required knowledge base. We will monitor and guide the product owner toward working methodologies.
  • After the complete boot camp training and one-to-one orientation with the product owner, we will suggest that he drive the entire product development and attend the scrum meetings.

Go through the Agile and DevOps interrelate to clearly understand the interrelation between Agile and DevOps!

30. What actions would you take if a team member were to articulate their belief that sprint planning is an inefficient utilization of time?

The job role of a Scrum Master comes with a lot of responsibilities. These meetings are most important to Agile teams, and they help them make sure a Scrum team runs smoothly. A team member may likely become less attentive to or bored with the meetings. I will try to understand why the team member is feeling this way. Also, I will make sure to communicate to them that each Scrum team member is integral to the project, as are Scrum planning meetings.

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31. How will you solve team conflicts as a scrum master?

In my experience, team conflicts can arise because of misunderstanding, foul work by a member, or work pressure. I will examine every point of view one over another.

  • Firstly, I will talk to each member one-on-one and get to know everyone’s perspective, and then I will speak with them commonly to find out the root cause of the conflict.
  • Then I will encourage them that we are a team and that every step can impact the entire team, and I will positively encourage them to work together in a healthy environment. After all, every team member is integral to the project.
  • If all these do not solve the issue, I will discuss it with the product owner and come up with a solution that should not hinder the product’s progress

32. Explain how you handle collaboration with people and their varied perspectives.

Doing work in a collaborative environment requires shared mutual respect among everyone. Every personality has its own perspective. To make a smooth workflow, one should follow healthy communication among the team members, mutual respect, teamwork, and participation. Individuals display a sense of empathy, patience, and openness in their responses to how they work with others.

Scrum Master Salary Trends

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Job Role  Average Salary in India Average Salary in the USA
Scrum Master – Experience (0 – 10) years Minimum – 11 LPA Minimum – 30,000 USD
Average – 17 LPA Average – 104,000 USD
Highest – 23 LPA Highest – 180,000 USD

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Scrum Master Job Trends

  1. Global Demand: According to LinkedIn, there are a total of 70K Scrum Master jobs in the United States.
  2. Projected Growth: As per the report from PMI-commissioned talent gap analysis by Anderson Economic Group (AEG), by 2027, the project management-oriented labor force in seven project-oriented sectors is expected to grow by 33%, or nearly 22 million new jobs.
  3. Regional Trends: According to LinkedIn, there are more than 8,000 Scrum Master jobs in India.

Scrum Master Job Opportunity

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Job Role Description
Scrum Master A common link between the product owners and other teams during the execution of large projects
Product Owner A product owner ensures a seamless delivery of product requirements by collaborating with stakeholders and customers
Project Manager A project manager handles an end-to-end project lifecycle to deliver requirements specified by the clients

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Roles and Responsibilities in Scrum Master

The roles and responsibilities can be a little diverse in different organizations. To sum up the key roles and responsibilities, let’s take a look at a sample Scrum Master job description posted by Infosys.

Roles and Responsibilities of Agile Scrum

To sum up the common responsibilities, let’s take a look at some of the roles and responsibilities:

  1. Clear Objectives: A scrum master is expected to be aware of agile principles and processes and should always be aligned with the user stories, sprints information, business requirements, etc.
  2. Proactive: Should initiate and formulate sprint objectives and goals for efficient workflow.
  3. Execution: Should develop new tasks and user stories and evaluate the progress of each and every task that is being done.
  4. Stakeholder Management: One of the most important responsibilities of a scrum master is to be able to navigate clear objectives and set goals by coordinating with different stakeholders/teams.

Conclusion

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We hope this set of Scrum Master Interview Questions will help you prepare for your interviews. Best of luck!

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If you have any questions, post your queries in the Intellipaat Community or let us know in the comments, and we’ll get back to you. 

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