Scrum Master Vs Project Manager – Differences & Responsibilities

Scrum Master Vs Project Manager – Differences & Responsibilities
September 20, 2021

Often in the IT industry, we come across terminologies; Scrum Master vs Project Manager. These terms frequently confuse people, and they think that both of them are the same and can be used interchangeably. However, it is not the truth.

Many times, people come across these questions; what if both these roles are the same, or is there any difference? If they are the same, then why do they have different names? All these questions confuse them about both these approaches.

Some people even consider a Project Manager as Scrum Master when working in an agile environment. It is partly correct. These two roles are quite different from each other, though they tend to overlay them to an extent. Scrum Master functions on Scrum project management ethics in agile projects. On the other hand, a Project Manager works on old principles of project management.

Who is a Scrum Master?

A development team is also known as a scrum. The product owner allots a task to the scrum, which they further break into smaller chunks, known as sprints.

A sprint consists of iterative development procedures with collaboration that manage the overall lifespan of a project. As a result, the product gets developed within the pre-defined period with the help of the Scrum methodologies.

It is the responsibility of a Scrum Master to ensure that the team follows the agile principles and values and functions accordingly. Also, he makes sure that the members work as per the pre-defined practices and ideas. Thus, a Scrum Master acts as a leader to facilitate agile-oriented product development.

The Role of a Scrum Master

The role of a Scrum Master is to serve the product manager and development team. The responsibilities of the scrum master are explained as follows.

Responsibilities toward the Product Owner

Responsibilities towards Development Team

Who is a Project Manager?

A project manager uses his project-management skills and data to lead product development from scratch to successful completion.

However, the horizon of responsibilities of a Project Manager is far beyond project management.

A project manager manages 10 key zones; cost, quality, resource, strategies, scope, integration, communication, risk, achievements, stakeholder, industry awareness, business, and guidance. A PM should know how to implement his skills and use these areas for the project’s benefit.

The Role of a Project Manager

A Scrum Master enables the scrum team to give the best output while a Project Manager has a bigger control over the project. He not only handles teams to deliver complex project output but also enables them to achieve desired goals. A PM also participates in various project activities.

He functions in a less risk-oriented environment when compared to a Scrum Master since he uses traditional disciplined project management techniques. 

A Project Manager examines risks and prepares himself for the forthcoming challenges. Also, he has a clear understanding of the project’s scope and its requirements.

However, the role and responsibilities of a PM are not easy these days. He has to go beyond looking for just the project’s basic needs. A project manager should be able to judge whether a specific approach works for their current project or not. He should come up with well-planned strategies and methodologies for the successful accomplishment of the development. Moreover, he should be with his team at every stage of the development cycle.

Scrum Master & Project Manager- Similarities

Until now, we have clearly discussed the roles and responsibilities of both a Scrum Master and a Project Manager. Therefore, we know that they are quite different and significant as well. Both of these approaches differ; however, their roles overlap. They both have certain similarities. They are as follows.

Scrum Master Vs Project Manager – Key Differences

The roles of a Scrum Master vs Project Manager overlap. However, their differences overpower their similarities. Scrum Master Vs Project Manager – Differences & Responsibilities

Wrap Up

From the above discussion of roles, responsibilities, similarities, and differences, it is clear that a Project Manager’s role is more of a leader while a Scrum Master acts as a trainer and guides the Scrum team towards agile development through the Scrum framework.

The emergence of the PMBOK 6th guide has expanded the role of a Project Manager. It means that it is not limited to the only waterfall as earlier. They also have to implement reiterative models according to the requirements and demands of the project.

Finally, both these roles have their respective sets of responsibilities and approaches.

Other Comparative Blogs that will help you to understand the various concept

Remote staffing vs Outsourcing – Scrum Master vs Project manager
Agile vs Waterfall Jira vs Asana vs Trello
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