3 Scrum Pillars – Transparency, Inspection and Adaptation

How empirical Scrum pillars are important and being implemented through Scrum Events

Whenever we talk about Agile frameworks, Scrum comes up as a prominent framework practiced in software and other industries. Scrum is used in 66% of all industries/teams according to the 15th Annual State Of Agile Report 2021. Agile and Scrum are based on empiricism and lean thinking. Scrum has 3 pillars i.e. Transparency, Inspection and Adaptation. All Scrum events designed based on these pillars. Here I will talk about how these 3 pillars give power to Scrum and help practitioners to get maximum value out of it.

Scrum Pillars

Photo by Quino Al on Unsplash


Transparency means making the team’s work visible to all stakeholders. Everyone should know where we are in terms of meeting product goals, sprint goals, and the definition of done. So stakeholders are in a better informed position to make better decisions. They can also make better predictions about future work and manage potential risks. Teams can use appropriate information radiators to make progress available to everyone. Transparency should be there to make team aware what is going on inside and outside the team.


When work progress and data are available in terms of achieving product goal, sprint goal, and meeting definition of done to teams, management, and stakeholders, it allows everyone to regularly inspect the trends, risks, and dependencies, if there is any variance or teams facing any impediments and help in taking informed decisions.


If there is some deviation, the team gets opportunity to do course correction through Inspection. Based on inspection, the team reviews the situation, and makes necessary changes to the existing plan or strategy. The team becomes more agile and responsive to changes and tweaks strategy and plans as and when required.

Let’s see how empiricism works in Scrum Events –

Sprint Planning

  • Transparency – The PO keeps product backlog prioritized, make sure the team is aware of the backlog items.
  • Inspection – Team reviews priority, capacity, velocity, risks, and dependencies.
  • Adaptation – Based on the above inspection, the team plans and commits the sprint goal

Daily Scrum

  • Transparency – Everybody provides their work updates, what they are doing to achieve the sprint goal.
  • Inspection – The team reviews progress, risk, impediments, and dependencies reported by team members.
  • Adaptation – Based on the progress made and impediments/dependencies reported, the team plans their next steps.

Sprint Review

  • Transparency – The team showcases work done in a sprint, and also talks about items in progress, challenges, impediments, etc.
  • Inspection – All participants review the work, customers/stakeholders ask required questions, and accept/reject work done by the team.
  • Adaptation – Based on feedback received, the team plans to work in the next sprint planning.

Sprint Retrospective

  • Transparency – Team members express their views, Happiness metrics and other team metrics are collected.
  • Inspection – The team reviews Happiness metrics and various other sprint metrics like burn down, velocity chart, etc.
  • Adaptation – Based on the above metrics, the team identifies Kaizen(improvement actions) for the next sprint to work on.

To summarize, Transparency, Inspection, and Adaptation implemented in scrum events to make scrum successful. I hope this article will help you understand empiricism better in the context of Agile and Scrum.