Organizational Sprint Pulse

The Organization has one or more Cross-functional Teams working in Sprints.

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The Scrum Team and the rest of the organization is out of step. Coursing either waiting time or Sprint interruptions.

If Scrum Teams working on the same product have different sprint lengths it can be hard to syncronize work that needs coordination. For example revised architecture, integration test, or introduction of new tools. But it is not only the coordination between the Scrum teams that needs syncronization. If the surrounding organization has a monthly pulse due to the financial rythm (ref. Ken Schwaber) and the Scrum teams has 1 or 3 weeks sprints, the organization as a whole will be out of step. The same is true if the Scrum teams have 2 or 4 weeks sprints, but the start and end dates aren't syncronized with the rythm of other departments in the organization.

Scrum teams depend on finances, sales and marketing, and other functions in an organization. They are rarely an independent unit. The surrounding organization has to learn to respect the teams' sprints and not disturb arbitrary.

But we also want to avoid unnessecary waiting time.

Centralized sprint lengths can take some freedom away from the team. 

On the other hand should Team Pulse and Organizational Pulse

 be harmonized to support flow.


Synchronize the teams’ sprints by having the same start/end date at least once a month. Let the organization as a whole follow a monthly rythm that can harmonize flow for Scrum teams' sprints, as well as for the financial rythm of the business. Allow teams and departments to choose shorter sprints. For example 1, 2, or 4 weeks sprint length.

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Can be used to make up for Cross-functional Teams and Stable Teams in order to keep specialization and resource management as a reminiscens of pre-Scrum times. Explicit synchronization points can be used to move team members between teams - or to coordinate between specialized teams. Organizational Sprint Pulse is best applied for Cross-functional and Stable teams.

Organizational Sprint Pulse supports coordination together with Scrum of Scrums.

Authors: Gertrud & Dina