Today I got a beta invitation from Internautdesign to have a look at their Scrum Tool ScrumNinja. You can choose between a hosted or installable version. Everything is built on the idea of an actual taskboard. Every project has 3 submenus – ‘Backlog’, ‘Card Wall’ and ‘Burndown’.
The Backlog Menu
The backlog contains the stories as a list. Based on the team velocity the stories are grouped in iterations of two weeks. Negative here: the length of an iteration can not be changed. You can change the sprint length by editing the current sprint. Creating a story you can edit the title, story points, tags and description. You can also add tasks, they consist of description, status, assigned to and hours remaining. Tasks can only be added when add or edit a story. Multiple tasks can be added by putting one task per line.
The Card Wall
The card wall has 4 columns. The first is reserved for stories. The other three columns are for the tasks, from left to right you got ‘pending’, ‘started’ and ‘complete’. Tasks can easily be moved by drag and drop(stories in the backlog can be moved the same way). Moving the tasks to another columns takes some time, not enough to get a coffee, but in order to move a second task to complete you have to wait until it’s actually there. I guess it is caused by a synchronous writing of the burndown chart?!
Once you moved all tasks of a story to complete a ‘deliver’ button shows up. The team can use the button to notify the product owner to review the story. The product owner on the other site can accept or deny the story.
The Burn down
The burn down shows the iteration chart with trend, target and the actual burn down chart. The burn down graph is based on the estimated time of all tasks. Estimating time of tasks is old and not used anymore. I prefer a burn down based on stories. I suggest to make the way of drawing the burn down optional. Edit: There will be a storypoint burn down added, because of popular demand(see Rodney’s comment)
I tried almost every scrum tool available. Every time I went back to the taskboard plus excel. ScrumNinja seems really nice especially, because it is small and clean. There are some things to do better, but there is also potential to build on. It does not convince me, but I am sure it will get its audience.