Informal feedback rather than performance measurements - User-centred evaluation in Scrum projects

Marta Lárusdóttir*, Åsa Cajander, Jan Gulliksen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


The main features of the Scrum process are intense communication between different stakeholders, and rapid feedback based on regular delivery of working software. The integration of traditional user-centred evaluation activities in this context is challenging. Hence, this paper presents an interview study of 21 informants, categorised in four different professional roles. The main contribution of the paper is an overview of the types of user-centred evaluation conducted by information technology professionals in various Scrum projects. Results show that various forms of feedback are indeed gathered on the usability and user experience of the software, system or service being developed. However, the user-centred evaluations conducted typically are informal with few users, gathering empirical qualitative data and performed during short unplanned sessions. Performance measurements gathering quantitative data are seldom used. The informants in the business specialist role merely ask users about their opinion, whereas the other roles use several user-centred evaluation activities to gather feedback on their design. Generally, feedback is gathered throughout the whole project, but often evaluation is conducted early in the project or even before the actual development starts. Finally, these results are discussed in relation to previous studies in the area.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1118-1135
Number of pages18
JournalBehaviour and Information Technology
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We would like to thank COST Action IC0904 Twintide for the financial support that they have provided. Also, we would like to thank all informants in the study who took their time to participate in the study. Moreover, we would like to thank associate professor Anders Jansson at the department of information technology at Uppsala University in Sweden, Christina Dörge at the Carl von Ossietzky University in Oldenburg in Germany, adjunct professor Niklas Hallberg and Elina Eriksson at the Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden and Gudmundur Valsson, project manager at Sudurorka in Iceland, for valuable feedback. Additionally, we would like to thank the reviewers of this journal that reviews the paper for their valuable comments.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2013 Taylor & Francis.

Other keywords

  • agile development
  • human-centred activities
  • Scrum
  • usability
  • user experience
  • user-centred evaluation


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