Scrum Tools | ScrumNinja | Review

Developed by Internaut Design, a company from San Francisco, California. Scrum Ninja is a hosted project management tool for scrum teams. You don’t to worry about installing anything on your company, all your information will be hosted onInternaut servers and accessible through the web. ScrumNinja is focused only on Scrum teams bringing the basic features necessary to run a scrum project and it is free for 3 users or less.

Getting Started

As usual, creating a project is your first activity in the tool and is possible to create as many projects as you need. Just provide a name and a timezone, to correctly update yourburndown chart. Immediately after creating a project you have to define your first sprint even before create your first story, it’s a little bit strange and if try to bypass this,ScrumNinja will automatic create a sprint for you, but don’t worry to much, you can edit the sprint data to your convenience.

scrumninja1

Stories and Tasks

So now you can create your stories, just a few info and you are done, you can choose to estimate the story at this moment or when it’s more convenient to you and after creating a few stories you will notice something on your backlog.ScrumNinja will divide all your backlog into sprints based on the average of previous sprints and if you try to put a new story on a sprint but the estimate is bigger them the sprint capacity a new sprint will be created unless you update the sprint capacity manually. I think it’s a unnatural way of thinking, what would be much simpler if the sprint projected velocity be updated automatically when a new story is added or moved or updated. To prioritize your stories is easy, just drag and drop each story on the list to the desired order, every tool should use this kind of mechanism and this feature is not perfect only because the idea of dividing the backlog into sprint upfront with fixed velocity will makeScrumNinja rearrange your sprints every time you change a priority and it can be confusing with you have a large backlog. Maybe is time to create your tasks. You will be taken to the Card Wall screen, where you can create the tasks. Very easy to do, but again, you need to estimate them in hours, so you will not see aburndown chart, if you don’t use hour estimates define 1 hour for everything as I said in previous reviews, it will do fine. The card wall isexactily a copy of a common task board and you can drag the tasks to update their status, you also can create new tasks, delete or edit some. ScrumNinja also provides a burndown feature but it’s only a simple hour tracking chart. It’s well designed but maybe you need something more.

Conclusion

ScrumNinja have good points, the extensive use of drag-and-drop capabilities is definitely a welcome, but ScrumNinja lacks of some more depth. There’s only basic features that may be insuficent for most of the scrum teams, maybe with some upgrades this tool can be a consistent one, but not right now.

3 responses to “Scrum Tools | ScrumNinja | Review

  1. Rodney Carvalho

    Definitely a fair review, Borris. Thanks for taking the time to review it. I’m finding that what we have is almost sufficient for most Scrum Teams, so we’re working to close the gap very soon while maintaining simplicity.

  2. Thanks for the review Borris. You are right, our product is not mature yet but we are working hard on it to make it so. We’ve had a lot of positive feedback, and like Rodney says most people find it sufficient for their day-to-day needs.

    We definitely have release planning and release burndowns at the top of our to-do list, plus some user interface/experience upgrades.

    I’m curious, what features do you find are missing?

  3. Boris,

    Very helpful post. Am looking forward to reviewing this tool and perhaps try on an upcoming project.

    Best to you!
    Alec

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