It is not an easy task to plan in a dynamic environment. When things change frequently, then we need to be equipped to meet the changes. Especially in a development cycle that involves many stages and making changes needs to be done carefully. It becomes difficult to include or remove priority in the middle of the development.
However, thanks to the iterative method that introduced the PDCA cycle. Find the image below that describes the PDCA. Yes, this makes agile methodology special and made many organizations transform their development method.
As seen above, due to constant planning, execution, review, and adjustment happening in every step, the process of adding or removing task becomes easy and cost-effective.
Now, let us introduce the term backlog to all those who are new to the Scrum framework.
This is just one term and there are many like a sprint, stand up and retrospective, etc which are commonly used by the product owners (PO), scrum masters (SM) and the agile development team. The word backlog is critical in the project and one must understand it better to work with them for the successful delivery of the product.
In a few words, let me explain the scrum framework for you to align on the common page before we talk about backlogs (sprint and product).
The process continues till the sprint and then after each sprint, a retrospective meeting is conducted to take the pending work to the next sprint and also to understand what went wrong to plan for an effective upcoming sprint.
If you have understood the above process, then the term backlog can be easily explained to you. The English word Backlog is defined as the pending work or accumulation of work that needs to be completed. However, in agile terminology, the word backlog is accompanied by product and sprint. There are two terms namely product backlog and sprint backlog. Let us demonstrate to you in the table given below.
|Product Backlog||Sprint backlog|
|List of all the items that need to be completed for developing the end product||List of items to be completed in each sprint|
|Product owner collects the backlog from the customer and assigns to the team||The team collects the backlog from the PO and decides the time frame to complete during each sprint|
|Specific to the end goal||Specific to the sprint|
|Will vary based on the customer vision||Will vary based on the product vision as defined by the PO|
|The entire set of work in progress||The subset of the product backlog|
|Independent of the sprint backlog||Purely dependent on the product backlog|
|All product features listed and story points are assigned to every user story individually||For every sprint, the to-do list is the sprint backlog. The task is disintegrated from the user story to allow the team to estimate the time for completion in hours.|
Planning poker tool is used to estimate time for each product backlog
Product owner owns it
|Scrum team owns|
|Until the completion of the entire project, the PO will maintain the backlogs||Every new sprint will get new backlogs added by the team|
Follow the suggestions given below to effectively implement product backlogs. PO is the key person and hence if you are a PO in your team, then read this twice to quickly grasp and prioritize your backlogs.
Scrum team will see the list of the items in the product backlog and based on PO’s prioritization they will choose the task and complete it in the sprints. These sprint backlogs can be managed effectively by following the guidelines given below.
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