How Does a Product Owner Prioritize Backlog

If you find you have a particularly large queue of urgent items, you might need a different process to manage those – like even over statements. To maintain our backlog, Jordan (our CEO & product manager) will review new issues, and compare them to the existing prioritized backlog, to see where in the stack they rank. I knew the factors that mattered for our team were reaching the most users, and making the most of our limited resources as a small team.

  • Smart Checklist is a Jira app that helps teams break down complex projects into smaller tasks.
  • Developed by Dai Clegg, this is the most widely used model while prioritizing the backlog.
  • Once you’ve done that, you simply sort them from lowest to highest effort.
  • While prioritizing backlog items based on user feedback, beware of the 1% trap and make sure that you deliver value to the majority of your users, not just the most vocal ones.
  • It’s common sense to start by developing the features that will be useful for the largest part of your user population and those that they will use most frequently.

It’s slightly less flexible, but can still easily be applied to any backlog. The MoSCoW prioritization technique was created by product marketing specialist Dai Clegg in 1994. It’s a versatile framework that’s easy to understand and incorporate into your project management tool.

Iteration planning, backlog maintenance, and backlog refinement

The Eisenhower framework is the basis for all 2×2 matrices, with features allocated across four quadrants with two dimensions. Educational Guides Guides and tools to unlock better work management. Resource Hub Top assets on productivity, collaboration, and more. Adobe Accelerate Wrike design tasks from Adobe Creative Cloud. Project Management Plan Agile projects, track deadlines, and deliver results.

With this app or service, you can also create a backlog of items and order the items by dragging and dropping the cards in the Board view. Here the motto is “the more the better.” The higher the number of performance functions the higher customer satisfaction. For example, if the phone is slimmer, and it boots up quickly, then we have more satisfied customers. The price of the product is related to the linear features, but these are not differentiators to selling the product. Ultimately, the quality of Product Backlog ordering depends on Agile’s empirical inspect and adapt approach to defining and executing work. In terms of tools, our teams typically use Jira or Trello to manage the backlog and categorize items.

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Indifferent — These have no impact on customer satisfaction levels. For example, refactoring parts of your code so that it is easier to read and understand. There is no direct value to the customer, but it will make it easier for you to maintain in the future. They must be included in your product, and are often taken for granted. When you stack rank, you consider each backlog item and place it in order of priority. You start with one, then two, then three, and continue to n, the total number of items in your backlog.

backlog refinement and prioritization techniques

This article shows you the best product prioritization methods and how to use them effectively to achieve your goals. Product Development board, we call this folder On Hold and we keep all lower priority tasks there. These requirements are nice to have, but not as important as Should Have items. Agile has had a huge impact on me both professionally and personally as I’ve learned the best experiences are agile, both in code and in life. You’ll often find me at the intersection of technology, photography, and motorcycling.

What Is Scrum and Why Is It Still Effective?

A 20/20 vision of the order of the Product Backlog is created, which shows what is important to stakeholders. When all money is spent, the bought items in the list reflect the collectively important items to the stakeholders. Scrum Teams involve possible users of Product Backlog items to determine what items are important. Therefore Scrum Teams refine only items that move further up the Product Backlog. To avoid refining too much ahead of time, Developers should only spend 10% of their time.

The top item with the value “one” is the highest-priority item, followed by the number two, three, four, and so on, until all backlog items are prioritized. Product backlog prioritization is important to have a structured to-do list in which items are arranged with the value they offer to the product. Find out more on the best tips to prioritize backlog items in this article. Refining your backlog is a valuable process that helps to ensure that your development team is working on the most important and valuable items first. Remember, an effective backlog refinement process is essential to keep your Agile project running smoothly and efficiently.

RICE (reach, impact, confidence, effort)

This is because it is easier to mitigate risks earlier on during the implementation. This one is a no-brainer, as it’s the basic function of this process. Backlog refinement meetings normally last 45 minutes to an hour. These prioritization factors are depicted in the below figure. Remember that Product Backlog ordering is an art, not a science. As leads of this process, POs must leverage input from their Development Teams and solution community stakeholders and their own intuition and experience.

However, each method’s usefulness will depend on the specific product or project where it’s applied. If you’re a product owner, you no doubt know that you need to manage your team’s product backlog. Up-to-date, detailed, and product backlog management techniques well-categorized backlog items are easier to manage during the implementation process. Collect user feedback to prepare for grooming sessions with Userpilot.When collecting feedback, focus on identifying the friction points.

Product Backlog vs Scrum Backlog: Understanding the difference

A UX Fishbowl consists of two groups and two steps, one group being the stakeholders and one being the Scrum Team. In refinement, Scrum Teams work with their stakeholders to develop these hypotheses. So, it’s all about the future work expressed as Product Backlog items in the Product Backlog.

backlog refinement and prioritization techniques

Therefore, if the development team and the Product Owner prioritize the backlog items together, then it can lead to a more accurate prioritized list. Afterward, the team can proceed with effort estimations and sprint planning. The cost of delay method is a highly effective backlog prioritization method that can reduce the risk of a potential loss. A product owner evaluates the items with the highest cost and places them at the top of the backlog. The tasks that may cause the company the most losses are given the highest priority.

Priority planning poker for inclusive prioritization

Prioritization brings measurable benefits in terms of time, money, and product success, and bad decisions set the product back. A well-prioritized backlog organizes what the product development team spends its time on and makes it easier to plan the release and the next iteration. Backlog prioritization is a critical part of the Product Owner’job. The PO is the person who is responsible for defining the key features and functionality of the product. The PO or the Product Manager must make the right decisions in setting priorities to ensure that the most valuable functionalities will be delivered within the agreed timeframe. Product owners dictate the priority of work items in the backlog, while the development team dictates the velocity through the backlog.