Top 11 scrum tools for maximizing team collaboration

Published on
January 8, 2023

Before anyone has an allergic reaction to Scrum and "tools" in the same sentence, hear us out.

Over the past 20 years, an entire sub-industry has emerged to help Agile organizations practice Agile. There are 3.2 million Scrum masters on LinkedIn and 46,000 Agile coaches. And yet, if you ask the engineers who work for these organizations (which we did), over 75% agree that “most Agile teams are not actually Agile.” More than a third of engineers agree that "Scrum practices are outdated."

Maybe it's time to challenge some of the legacy thinking around Agile, or at least what Agile has become in practice, and how tools available to Scrum teams have evolved to improve communication and collaboration.

If you're managing a Scrum team, the right tools can have a positive impact on communication, collaboration, and overall satisfaction. They can give you an advantage, making you and your team more successful.

That’s why we’ve created this roundup of some of the best Scrum tools out there. Whether you want a tool for tracking tasks, a tool for meetings, or a tool for managing small teams, we’ll cover some of the top choices on the market today (as well as how to choose the right one for your team).

How Scrum tools can set your team up for success 💪

Think of Scrum (or any Agile methodology) as a framework. Within this framework, there are a lot of smaller steps that all fit together to help teams deliver products. How you execute those smaller steps depends on your team, your product, and a host of other factors, but generally you’ll follow these steps:

  • Plan & Commit: Scrum methodology starts with sprint planning, where you define what the team will focus on and release.
  • Execute & Adapt: Then 1-5 week sprints for project work to meet sprint goals, where you meet every day in “daily Scrum” to support each other and adapt.
  • Release & Reflect: It typically ends with a sprint review, a release, and a sprint retrospective before you begin the cycle again. 

If you want this process to run like a well-oiled machine, you need a great set of Agile project management tools to help keep everything organized and everyone on track. Here are a few of the top ways that Scrum tools can help:

Elevating team communication 🗣

“Individuals and interactions over process and tools,” right? 

Right. 

But, we need to consider that the Agile Manifesto was written over 20 years ago — in a time before team interactions mostly took place within... tools.

Today, product and dev teams rely on lots of different collaboration tools to interact — Slack, Zoom, and Microsoft Teams (among endless others). With so many digital tools, communication can get confusing. Someone said something important yesterday, but did they send it as an email? Or was it a message in Slack? Which channel was it in?

It’s easy for important comms to get lost in the shuffle, especially when using multiple tools for email, commenting, and more. Good Scrum tools will integrate and help organize information across these tools so that it’s easier to find what you need when you need it.

Improving meetings 🎯

The Scrum framework revolves around the daily Scrum meeting, where your development team gets together and talks about their progress yesterday, what they have planned for today, and any blockers that may be in their way. It’s meant to be a fast-paced, energetic meeting that sets the tone for the day.

Great Scrum software can give you tools to make your daily Scrum even better. That can include timers to keep conversation contained, app features that randomly select the next speaker, templates you can use to outline what needs to be discussed, and more.

With an AI-powered Scrum Master like Spinach, you can improve your team meetings’ productivity even further. An AI Scrum Master works to facilitate efficient communication, organize tasks, track progress, and provide helpful meeting insights. This makes it much easier to keep meetings on track and keep everyone in the meeting aligned toward business goals.

Helping you track tasks and progress ✅

Breaking projects down into bite-size tasks is one of the best ways to organize them — but you also need to be able to track the progress of those tasks. With Scrum tools, you can quickly assign tasks to team members in a way that’s efficient and transparent and then track their progress in real time.

Scrum tools with features for task and project tracking help you maintain a bird’s eye view of your project and stay on top of issues as they develop.

Enhancing collaboration and connection 💭

Effective collaboration is the fuel that powers successful projects. However, most teams need the right tools in order to facilitate efficient communication and collaboration. This is especially true for remote and hybrid teams that don’t always work under the same roof.

Thanks to a variety of messaging and collaboration features, Scrum tools like Spinach make it easy for team members to connect and collaborate no matter where they’re working. This enhanced collaboration and connection provides a ton of benefits, from improving team member morale to preventing avoidable issues.

Scrum tools for meetings

One of the top use cases of Scrum tools is efficient, insightful, and productive meetings. If you would like to take your team meetings to the next level, here are three tools that can help.

1. Spinach

Spinach is like an AI Scrum Master that joins your Agile meetings, creates summaries specific to the type of Agile meeting it is, and helps you keep your board up to date based on what was discussed.

Spinach is the only Scrum tool out there specifically designed to summarize the outcomes of Agile meetings — sprint planning, daily standup, retros, and backlog refinement. While other tools claim they can summarize meetings, they usually provide lengthy transcripts or a chronological play-by-play over every single discussion. With Spinach, our prompts are designed to cut the filler and just focus on decisions and next steps.

“The summaries are much better than what we got from Supernormal and Otter. They are more specific to the Agile process,” says Jason Oliver, Principal Product Manager at EMCEE.

And Spinach doesn't stop at summarization. Connect to Jira, Trello, Asana, ClickUp, or Linear and we’ll automatically link to any tickets you discuss for additional context. If you discuss something that doesn't have a ticket, we'll suggest one for you and add it to your board with a single click of approval.

If you're a Scrum master (or just playing the role), Spinach can help you work 10x more efficiently. 

“It is not humanly possible to note down, remember, and generate each and every ticket while leading and comprehending all of the verbal communications happening within each meeting. Spinach has made my work much more efficient,” says Sadia Shahid, Scrum Master at Bizvaex Consulting.

Key features and capabilities

  • Set up notifications to prep for daily Scrum meetings.
  • Rely on speaker rotation and timers to run the meeting for you.
  • Automatically generate Agile meeting summaries.
  • Generate and assign action items from meetings.
  • Create tickets for issues discussed in meetings.
  • Park discussions for later in the Parking Lot.
  • Integrate with tools like Slack, Zoom, Google Meet, and Jira.

Pricing

  • Free starter plan: Meeting summaries and ticket suggestions
  • Pro plan: $49 per user/month to unlock additional integrations and reporting
  • Enterprise plan: Custom pricing for additional features such as branded, customizable meeting templates and a dedicated customer success manager

2. Parabol

Parabol is a unique tool designed to facilitate retro meetings and incident post-mortems. The tool asks each person to add cards for what they should Start Doing, Stop Doing, and Continue Doing.  You can see each avatar in the app, so it feels collaborative and can eliminate the need to share your screen. Users can also add cards async if they can't join the retro meeting or post-mortem.

Key features and capabilities

  • Use timers and other tools to keep live chats flowing.
  • Set notifications and deadlines to ensure people respond to async meetings.
  • Use anonymous suggestions in retrospectives to get honest feedback.
  • Integrate with Jira, GitHub, Slack, and other popular Scrum tools.

Pricing

  • Starter: Free forever for two teams
  • Team: $6 per user per month
  • Enterprise: Custom pricing

3. Miro

Miro is a visual collaboration platform that lets you connect many of your team's most popular tools — like Jira, Zoom, or Google Docs. Everything you do in Miro is laid out beautifully in an easy-to-read format with color coding and drag-and-drop features. That includes card-based task management and things like digital whiteboards for brainstorming sessions.

We especially recommend Miro for your retrospective meetings. It’s easy for the team to prepare their input in advance, async. Which leads to more honest and transparent input and more concise sharing during the live discussion. 

Key features and capabilities

  • Integrate and work with popular tools directly within Miro.
  • Flexible templates offer lots of project management customization.
  • Use both the desktop platform and mobile apps.

Pricing

  • Free for single workspace with three boards
  • Starter: $8 per user per month
  • Business: $16 per user per month
  • Enterprise: Custom pricing

Scrum tools for tracking tasks

Scrum tools help keep projects running smoothly by making it easy to assign and track all the individual tasks that make up the project. If you want to use Scrum tools for better task management, these are four great options to consider.

4. Jira

There are few bigger names in Scrum project management tools than Jira. This platform offers just about everything you can imagine — Scrum boards, Kanban boards, reporting options, customizable backlogs, burndown charts, highly customizable workflows, and much more. 

Originally designed for software development teams using Agile methodologies, Jira has since evolved to be a highly versatile tool used across a variety of industries and project types. It offers everything teams need to plan, organize, and execute projects in a way that is collaborative and efficient.

By the way — Spinach integrates nicely with Jira, too. This integration adds status updates to Jira tickets so that you can see at a glance what’s happening, the progress being made, and any blockers in the way. Check it out here.

Key features and capabilities

  • Get started easily with templates for daily Scrum, Kanban, and more.
  • Create project roadmaps to plan projects and track progress.
  • Develop reports to get key insights into project progress.
  • Use drag-and-drop features to set up automations.

Pricing

  • Free for up to 10 users
  • Standard: $8.15 per user per month
  • Premium: $16 per user per month
  • Enterprise: Custom pricing

5. Asana

Among project management tools, Asana is one of the bigger players. This tool delivers features for planning projects, assigning tasks, tracking milestones, and more. It’s a fully featured app that allows you to track dependencies, and teams can use it to collaborate easily. 

This one is ideal for teams or startups who want a simpler solution to project management and task tracking than, say, an app like Jira with thousands of features. With Asana’s streamlined and user-friendly platform, you can start assigning and tracking tasks without having to overcome a steep learning curve.

Key features and capabilities

  • Use Boards to track tasks through a visual interface.
  • Create to-do lists to break projects down into manageable steps.
  • Map out projects via Asana’s timeline view.
  • Set up calendars to track schedules, spot downtime, and manage workloads.

Pricing

  • Basic: Free forever
  • Premium: $10.99 per user per month
  • Business: $24.99 per user per month
  • Enterprise: Custom pricing

6. Monday.com

Monday.com is up there with Jira and Asana as one of the most popular Scrum management apps out there — and there are good reasons why. This platform features a simple, clean interface with color-coded features that make it easy to see what is happening at a glance.

With Monday.com, you can create highly customizable workflows for Scrum or other methodologies. Monday.com also offers easy-to-use communication and collaboration tools that allow remote teams to work together effectively.

Key features and capabilities

  • Create task boards with custom fields.
  • Create powerful Gantt charts.
  • Automate status updates, email notifications, and more.
  • Share documents, files, and more.

Pricing

  • Individual: Free forever
  • Basic: $8 per user per month
  • Standard: $10 per user per month
  • Pro: $16 per user per month
  • Enterprise: Custom pricing

7. Trello

If you need a simple task management platform that offers a few great collaborative tools, Trello is a good option. Trello revolves around its card-based boards: Create a board, add lists to it, and then add cards to your lists to manage individual tasks. 

From there, you can attach shared documents, files, links, and more to each card — and you can also add checklists, deadlines, and more. Trello also lets you assign tasks out to individual users plus commenting features let you easily leave updates on tasks.

In addition to the board view, Trello also lets you look at tasks via calendars, timelines, tables, and other views — plus you can track metrics through the dashboard view.

Key features and capabilities

  • Switch between different views to see projects from different angles.
  • Automate tasks and workflows via built-in automation tools.
  • Use plug-ins to integrate other popular apps and platforms.
  • Use premade templates or create your own for efficient task tracking.
  • Add different users to different workspaces to keep team spaces organized.

Pricing

  • Free: Basic features for individuals and small teams
  • Standard: $5 per user per month
  • Premium: $10 per user per month
  • Enterprise: Sliding scale; quote for specific pricing

Scrum tools for smaller teams

Smaller teams are often better off choosing a simpler, more affordable tool compared to the advanced tools used by large teams managing multiple projects. If you want a tool for your small team that’s easy to use (and easy on your wallet) consider one of these four contenders. 

8. Targetprocess

Targetprocess is an Agile project management tool that uses visual boards to help teams easily understand the status of tasks and projects. It offers a simple, user-friendly interface that is ideal for smaller teams as well as the ability to easily scale as your team grows.

With Targetprocess, you can look forward to numerous project management tools and features, including sprint management features, product backlog management, and backlog refinement tools to keep projects running smoothly. It also gives you tools to split user stories, which is super helpful for product owners.

Key features and capabilities

  • Manage Agile projects and Scrum projects at scale.
  • Use resource management tools to manage cross-functional teams.
  • Remove blind spots with strategic portfolio management.

Pricing

  • Pricing details are available via quote only.

9. Scrumwise

Scrumwise is all about managing Scrum projects. It has a streamlined user interface that makes it easy to jump in and get started, and with it, you can handle all the basics: sprint planning, backlog management, product roadmap development, burndown charts, and more. 

Ease-of-use, affordability, and a laser focus on Scrum principles make Scrumwise an excellent choice for smaller teams that need a solution that’s ready to go right out of the box.

Key features and capabilities

  • Create teams within the app and assign roles.
  • Manage your backlog with lists, tags, and filters.
  • Plan releases efficiently and predict release dates.
  • Use sprint management tools to organize sprints visually.

Pricing

  • Yearly Plan: $7.50 per user per month, billed annually
  • Monthly Plan: $9 per user per month, billed monthly

10. Infinity

Infinity is another user-friendly Scrum tool ideally suited for smaller teams. It doesn’t offer a dashboard for managing multiple projects, but for managing a single project at a time, Infinity offers useful features like progress visualizations, the ability to assign tasks, and the ability to easily manage sprints.

Best of all for small teams with limited time and resources, Infinity lets you perform all of these tasks using simple drag-and-drop commands. This makes it easy for teams to get started using Infinity without any hassles or frustrations.

Key features and capabilities

  • Use different views for progress tracking and prioritization.
  • Customize workflows with filters and tags.
  • Automate recurring tasks with preset templates.

Pricing

  • Basic: $3.75 per user per month
  • Pro: $6 per user per month

11. VivifyScrum

VivifyScrum is a good option for small teams who need developer tools similar to Jira's — but without the steep price tag. With this platform, you’ll have both an Agile board and a Scrum board so that you can plan sprints and track tasks.

VivifyScrum is easy to use and offers time management features to help everyone stay on track. It’s another excellent tool to consider if you want a no-nonsense, user-friendly platform that works well for smaller teams. It’s also an affordable solution, offering a low, flat-rate plan for teams with ten members or less.

Key features and capabilities

  • Track work hours with timesheets.
  • Choose between Agile, Scrum, and Kanban boards.
  • Get reports and statistics to monitor team performance.
  • Use time management features to create invoices.

Pricing

  • Seven-day free trial, no credit card required
  • Starter: $10 per month for up to 10 members
  • Standard: $6 per user per month for teams between 11-50 members
  • Growth: $5 per user per month for teams between 51-100 members
  • Enterprise: Custom pricing for teams with 100+ members

Better Agile meetings with Spinach, AI Scrum Master

Scrum methodology is one of the best ways to organize projects and manage project teams, and it’s a methodology that can be made even more effective with the right tools. By helping facilitate effective collaboration, improving project transparency, and making it easy to assign and track tasks, Scrum tools empower Agile teams to be more productive and efficient.

If you would like to get started using an AI Scrum Master that will make your team meetings more insightful and successful, there’s no better choice on the market than Spinach! With Spinach, you can automatically generate detailed meeting summaries, meeting notes, meeting insights, and more — all without the need for any manual input or note-taking.

Ready to take your Agile meetings to new heights? Sign up for Spinach today!

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