SEPTEMBER 2019 PROJECT MANAGEMENT
Dominic Feeney has led the
Scrum project at Crowcon
The view from the top
Frazer Mackay is the operations director at Crowcon.
He says: “The Scrum approach has been great for myself and
the operations team, as it has not only accelerated the product
development time but the succinct, high-intensity stand-up meetings
resonates perfectly with our fast-moving manufacturing environment.
With a primary focus on the end date and multi-disciplinary team
approach, Scrum has also o ered benefi ts in much earlier intervention
from my team, as well as much greater collaboration across the
business and as a side – it’s great to see people stepping in to cover
each other for the greater good of the organisation.”
“At Crowcon we’re always looking to improve our processes and
effi ciency,” says Feeney. “I attended a training course run by our
parent company, Halma plc, on Scrum working methods. We
decided to trial Scrum methods on one of our product management
projects. We decided to try to build on our great UK success by
bringing one of our products to a new market – namely the USA.
“This seemed like the perfect opportunity to trial the Scrum
methodology. I became the product owner, detailing what tasks
and features were needed to be able to localise and launch the
product in the USA. I assembled a cross-functional Scrum team
from all areas of the business concerned with the project.
“After bringing them up to speed on Scrum techniques, we
tweaked the process slightly to better fi t our company, with twiceweekly
meetings instead of daily and some changes to how we
track, log and move tasks around the Scrum board.
“The results were fantastic. Scrum brought us higher levels of
focus and made us hone in on the project without distraction. We
were able to prioritise more eff ectively and learn and react to any
hold-ups or issues much faster. Due to the cross-functional nature
of the Scrum Team, certain facets of the project, which may have
been forgotten or overlooked, all came into play at the right stage.
“We managed to bring the product to market in the new territory
in fi ve months from start to fi nish. We estimate a project like
this would have ordinarily taken the best part of 12 months using
“Due to the high level of effi ciency gain, we have rolled out Scrum
methods to other areas and projects within the business and have
seen similar effi ciency gains. Waterfall techniques still have their
place and work well in production, supply chain and scheduling, as
well as for larger long-term projects, but we are fi nding that Scrum
methods can work eff ectively, even within a larger waterfall-type
project, to get certain stages completed quickly and eff ectively.”
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