Episode I Continued: The Product Backlog

If you only knew the POWER of the well-groomed backlog!

Having a well groomed and properly broken-down Product Backlog will determine the effectiveness of every SCRUM team drawing work from it.

With the proper user story granularity, SCRUM teams are able to quickly review stories for complexity during sizing sessions, increasing the time used to discuss the approach and work involved on each story and decreasing the time needed to explain what the user stories is requesting to be done.  Story point sizing and sprint planning are more efficient and more fun, and the general mood moving into a new sprint is more positive when the decided-upon group of work is well understood and easily consumable.

More-over, the likelihood that each sprint will complete the planned work on time with a high level of quality is increased because:

  • Code is delivered earlier and more frequently to the integration environment allowing the testing of the code to happen sooner
  • Code which is tested in smaller batches is more quickly fixed if issues are found, allowing for quicker acceptance into forward-moving code base
  • Smaller deliveries of code allows for continuous integration activities to be performed within the sprint
  • Continuous integration allows for the running of automated crash and smoke tests to be performed overnight with the results being available to the team when they arrive the next day

And the list goes on…

A well groomed and properly granulated Product Backlog help an agile development shop to be successful and should never be overlooked or trivialized.

“Impressive, most impressive!” – Darth Vader, The Empire Strikes Back

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