What is WSJF (Weighted Shortest Job First) in Agile?

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Oct 03, 2023

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WSJF represents Weighted Shortest Job First. Organizations using Agile utilize this apparatus to help groups in focusing on projects. Weighted Shortest Job First in Agile uses two fundamental factors: weightage or worth of the job given the entire project and its length. Weighted Shortest Job First a worth to each work and partition that by the gig's length to get a position for each. Finally, the task having the higher ranking is being given priority. Weighted Shortest Job First technique that focuses on prioritizing the work. This strategy considers the worth and time of the project and the rankings given to each task. The ones that get the most noteworthy scores are those that finished first. The methodology intends to focus on projects with a higher worth however a more limited time to deliver over those that convey less worth and take more time.

Uses Cases of Weighted Shortest Job First

Various groups and organizations can utilize WSJF Agile to add a particular order to their list of work to be done. In return making it easier and simpler for them to finish more significant tasks. For instance, the group members of marketing departments can focus on conducting their work by way of campaigns, seminars, and workshops with the help of the highest return on Investment.

Factors Affecting Weighted Shortest Job First in Agile


  •  Job Size:  The estimated time or effort required to complete the various items of the tasks directly affects its WSJF. Accurate estimation is crucial, and factors like team experience, technology complexity, and dependencies can impact time estimates.
  •   Availability of Resources:  The accessibility of talented colleagues, devices, and assets can influence the genuine time it takes to get done with a responsibility, which, in turn, influences WSJF. The shortfall in assets could expand the time required for higher-esteem work.
  • Risk and Uncertainty:  Risk and Uncertainty related to a work can influence its WSJF. Less secure work might call for greater investment or assets, possibly influencing its situation in the prioritization request.
  •  Feedback of Customer:   Feedback of customers and demands can impact the prioritization of projects. High-need client demands or issues might be tended to immediately, influencing Weighted Short Job First.

Advantages of using Weighted Shortest Job First


  •  Transparency: WSJF estimations focus on fairness, transparency, openness and trust. This transparent mechanism encourages correspondence and mutual perspective among colleagues, partners, stakeholders and regulatory authorities.
  •  Improved Decision-Making: WSJF in Agile decreases partiality and subjectivity in direction by depending on information-driven computations. This assists associations in making more objective decisions and informed prioritization choices.
  •  Flexibility: WSJF gives adaptability to adjust to evolving needs, client input, or economic situations. Agile groups can change their work appropriately, advancing spryness and responsiveness.
  •  Risk Mitigation: WSJF permits associations to consider factors, for example, administrative consistency and hazards while focusing on work. This proactive methodology mitigates possible dangers and keeps away from expensive consistency issues.

Calculation of Weighted Shortest Job First

Weighted Shortest Job First (WSJF) in Agile is a prioritization strategy utilized in the development of Lean and Agile software to assist groups with concluding which elements or client stories to deal with directly. It is principally utilized with regard to the Agile Framework. WSJF considers both the size of a task and its business worth in deciding the request for execution. This is the way you can compute the Weighted Shortest Job First:

WSJF = Business Value / Job Size 


Business Worth (BV): This is a mathematical calculation assigned to a task or client story that addresses its significance to the business. Business worth can be resolved in light of variables like income potential, key arrangement, rules and regulations, and impact on the customers. The higher the business esteem, the more critical the occupation is to the association or the organization.

Size of the job: This addresses the size expected to finish the job. In Agile, it is much of the time estimated in the story focuses, which are an overall proportion of intricacy, exertion, and chance related to a task. More modest positions have lower sizes, and bigger positions have higher sizes.

Step 1: Ascertain the Cost of the Delay

Various elements related to the cost of delay include

Worth to the business as well as the client: It ought to be estimated with a general score from 1 to 10.

Time criticality:  It demonstrates the significance of finishing the project.

Opportunity enablement and reduction of the risks: Do you really think that each job diminishes future risks or enhances business opportunities and performance?

Groups need to make a scale for every component that ought to be consistent, for instance, 1 to 10, and add these numbers and values. The result obtained by following these steps will be considered as Cost of Delay.

Step 2: Calculate Job Duration (or Size)

Sometimes it might be critical to computing the duration of the job since it relies upon current asset levels, ranges of abilities, conditions, and so on. Each of these factors can build the term worth to a number that may be difficult to compute involving the WSJF in Agile Formula. To make it simpler, groups can allocate a number in view of the relative estimated workforce each month. Job Size can be utilized in cases where the duration of the job ought to be simpler and specific. It is vital to guarantee the score scale for both the expense of postponement and the duration of the job ought to be something similar. The size or length of the smaller number will be first prioritized.

WSJF Examples

Here is a WSJF example.

Example 1: Cost of delay = $8,000 per month

Duration = 2 months

Thus, WSJF = 8,000 / 2 = 4,000

Example 2: Cost of delay = $200,000 per month

Duration = 1 year

Thus, WSJF = 200,000/12 = 16666.66

Example 3: Cost of delay = $600,000 per month

 Duration = 2 years

Thus, WSJF = 600,000/24 = 25,000

As per the above-mentioned examples, it can be easily demonstrated that example 3 ought to be prioritized due to the high score of Weighted Shortest Job First.

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Conclusion of Weighted Shortest Job First

In conclusion, Weighted Shortest Job First (WSJF) is a strong prioritization procedure in Agile. By taking into account the mix of business value and size of the job, WSJF assists groups and associations with arriving at informed conclusions about which tasks or roles to handle first. It guarantees that activities with higher worth and more limited deadlines come first, upgrading the progression of significant worth to partners. WSJF advances transparency, continuity, information-driven navigation, and adaptability in adjusting to evolving conditions and minimizing risks. This technique is a fundamental tool for accomplishing productivity and agility to complete the project. So, if you are considering scrum and agile as your dedicated partners in career growth and wish to lead scrum teams in future, then you must consider StarAgile’s CSM Certification. This will help you to apply the Scrum principles in a better way at your workplace and significantly increase your productivity. 


1. What are the advantages of using Weighted Shortest Job First?

A. WSJF helps ensure transparency, assists in making decisions, ensures flexibility, reduces risks and enhances value.

2. What are the factors affecting Weighted Shortest Job First (WSJF)?

A. There are various factors that affect Weighted Shortest Job First such as the availability of resources, risks and uncertainty, dynamics of the market, and feedback from the customers.

3. What is the formula for calculating Weighted Shortest Job First?

A. WSJF = Cost of Delay / Job Size

 4. What is the score scale for WSJF?

A. It refers to the prioritization method which is mainly used to determine the completion of the project on the basis of the cost of delay and potential value.

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