Sprint Planning duration

Last post 08:50 am March 7, 2018
by RJ Macasaet
6 replies
Author
Messages
11:45 am March 6, 2018

Hi All,

 

Scrum guide specifies that Sprint Planning could take up to 8 hours for a month-long sprint. Is it proportionally reduced for shorter sprints (For example: '6 hours or less' for 3 week sprint/ '4 hours or less' for 2 week sprint) or is '8 hours or less' applicable to all sprint durations? Please let me know.

 

Regards,

Kiran

07:09 pm March 6, 2018

See http://scrumguides.org/scrum-guide.html#events-planning

"Sprint Planning is time-boxed to a maximum of eight hours for a one-month Sprint. For shorter Sprints, the event is usually shorter."

01:05 am March 7, 2018

The phrase "proportionately shorter" hasn't appeared in the Scrum Guide since the October 2011 version. The July 2013 version does not contain this phrase. Starting in July 2013, the Scrum Guide simply says that the event is "usually shorter".

Personally, I think that the "proportionately shorter" is a good starting point. I think it's a warning sign if your Sprint Planning for a 2 week Sprint takes 8 hours. For a 2 week Sprint, it may be a good idea to start with a 4 hour Sprint Planning. However, it may be much shorter.

From my experiences, the actual duration of the Sprint Planning depends on the team, how well refined the backlog items are, and how good the Product Owner and Development Team is with ordering the product backlog. If you are investing enough time in refinement and what gets refined matches what needs to get done next, I've consistently seen a 2 week Sprint planned in about an hour and a half.

03:09 am March 7, 2018

Duration of Sprint Planning is very important factor to make this event effective. I definitely agree with Thomas that the "proportionately shorter" is a good starting point. 

There is also one problem I guess about time-box events. At least in my company (where i am working), I see many examples of Sprint Planning when the Team are boring at this event. And the reason of this is that SM says that the event must be for 6 hours however it is absolutely enough to spend 4-5 hours. Due to this the Sprint Planning is transforming to Sprint retrospective for example and so on. 

03:42 am March 7, 2018

@Orkhan Efendiev, maybe your SM should take PSM test; Scrum Guide explicitly says that meetings should not run longer than absolutely needed, and there's a corresponding question on the test, I believe in both PSM I and II. If you want to bring Lean into the mix - running meeting for the sake of the meeting is an egregious example of waste.

06:23 am March 7, 2018

Hi Alex. 

I meant examples from my company but not from my team :)) in my team (where I am the product owner) everything is ok. At least I hope so 

08:50 am March 7, 2018

You could use this formula for the maximum time box (in hours) for Sprint Planning:

Maximum Sprint Planning Time box (in hours) = Sprint duration in weeks (expressed in decimal values) X 2

 

Examples:

(a) For a 3 week sprint, you have 3.0 multiplied by 2 which gives you a 6 hour maximum time box

(b) For a Sprint which lasts 2 weeks and 2 days (.4 of a week), you have 2.4 multiplied by 2 which gives you a 4.8 hour (4 hours and 48 minutes) maximum time box

 

I highly doubt that there will be exam questions like (b) but this can happen in practice. You could use this formula as a rule of thumb.