Sprint Review - Acceptance of the User Story by Product Owner

Last post 04:06 pm July 29, 2019
by Ian Mitchell
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05:42 am July 28, 2019

Hi All -

I'm certified scrum master and preparing for PMI-ACP certification. As part of my reading, went through particular blog where the author mentioned Sprint Review Event as a Demo of Product Increment and it is the time where the PO will decided whether it's done or not done and something is missing. Also it is mentioned that team could invite Stakeholder if needed. I feel this is wrong interpretation from the author who say he is experienced Agile coach.

My understanding of Sprint review is more than a demo where the PO invites the Stakeholders and the development team will walk through the DONE work of the sprint and the stakeholders will be given time to explore the increment and then scrum team will go through product backlog if any changes or prioritization is required in accordance to the product vision. 

 

Please provide your inputs on below points -

1. PO can accept the user story as DONE anytime during the sprint timebox once the user story meets Definition of Done

2. Stakeholder must present in the Sprint review for feedback

 

Thanks

Aditya

 

 

12:25 am July 29, 2019

PO can accept the user story as DONE anytime during the sprint timebox once the user story meets Definition of Done

The Scrum Guide doesn't talk very much about accepting work as Done. The only place where it does is in the context of cancelling a Sprint, where a Product Owner can accept part of the work, if it's potentially releasable.

I'd agree with the general sentiments of your statement, but not necessarily all of the details. I'm not sure it makes sense for a Product Owner to accept a User Story (or a Product Backlog Item in any format), but rather an Increment. The Development Team can produce an Increment at any point in the Sprint, as long as there is one completed as an input into the Sprint Review. Perhaps the team will product an Increment after getting each Product Backlog Item to Done, but this isn't required.

Stakeholder must present in the Sprint review for feedback

The Scrum Guide states that the attendees of the Sprint Review are the Scrum Team (Product Owner, Scrum Master, and Development Team) and "key stakeholders invited by the Product Owner".

I can definitely see advantages in having some external (to the Scrum Team, not necessarily to the organization) stakeholders present. However, as long as the objectives of the Sprint Review can be met, I don't believe that there is any requirement for the Product Owner to invite anyone else.

My understanding of Sprint review is more than a demo where the PO invites the Stakeholders and the development team will walk through the DONE work of the sprint and the stakeholders will be given time to explore the increment and then scrum team will go through product backlog if any changes or prioritization is required in accordance to the product vision. 

I'd agree with most of this. The Scrum Guide identifies a few other elements of the Sprint Review, such as reviewing work that is not Done, the Development Team discussing what went well / what didn't go well in the Sprint, and review of timeline or budget or marketplace for future releases. The important thing to take away is that the Sprint Review is far more than a demo, but often includes a demonstration of Done work.

07:14 am July 29, 2019

Looking at the Scrum Guide 

The Sprint Review includes the following elements:

• Attendees include the Scrum Team and key stakeholders invited by the Product Owner;
• The Product Owner explains what Product Backlog items have been “Done” and what has not been “Done”;
• The Development Team discusses what went well during the Sprint, what problems it ran into, and how those problems were solved;
• The Development Team demonstrates the work that it has “Done” and answers questions about the Increment;
• The Product Owner discusses the Product Backlog as it stands. He or she projects likely target and delivery dates based on progress to date (if needed);
• The entire group collaborates on what to do next, so that the Sprint Review provides valuable input to subsequent Sprint Planning;
• Review of how the marketplace or potential use of the product might have changed what is the most valuable thing to do next; and,
• Review of the timeline, budget, potential capabilities, and marketplace for the next anticipated releases of functionality or capability of the product.

Demonstration of the "Done" items is only a part of the Review meeting, but from my experience this is the most common understanding of the Review meeting.

Product Owner and Development Team should work together through Sprint on the PBIs and create a feedback loop for each in order to make sure that they work on things and bring the most value with the Product Increment at he end of the Spring. So all things that lead to not achieving "Done" with some PBIs should be discussed during Sprint.

02:49 pm July 29, 2019

Like @Thomas I agree your statements for the most part.  His statements about stakeholder involvement in the Review are very much like my own. For example, if the Sprint Goal resulted in an increment of value to the development team in order for them to continue work that will provide value to the end user, there really is no value in having an end user at the Review.

PO can accept the user story as DONE anytime during the sprint timebox once the user story meets Definition of Done

As @Thomas points out the only place in the Scrum Guide that acceptance by the PO is mentioned is in relation to canceling of a Sprint. The word accept is only found 3 times in the Scrum Guide. Search it to see where and how it is used. In all other places completion is based on meeting the Definition of Done which is something that the entire Scrum Team understands to mean completion. As such, the PO doesn't accept, the entire Scrum Team accepts when they agree that the Definition of Done has been met.

I applaud your questioning of the blog article. It shows you have a good understanding of the Scrum Guide and the value that all of the described pieces.  

 

04:06 pm July 29, 2019

PO can accept the user story as DONE anytime during the sprint timebox once the user story meets Definition of Done

The only thing a PO can accept is a "done" increment of release quality. That doesn't necessarily correspond to a particular item such as a user story. Unless they arrange otherwise with the Product Owner, the Development Team are under no obligation to ensure that each completed Product Backlog item is discretely releasable.