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Grooming is a part-time activity during a Sprint between the Product Owner and the Development Team. Often the Development Team has the domain knowledge to perform grooming itself.

Last post 01:48 am October 4, 2015 by RAMESH PB
6 replies
02:50 am September 11, 2015

The recent version of scrum guide states:
"Product Backlog refinement is the act of adding detail, estimates, and order to items in the Product Backlog. This is an ongoing process in which the Product Owner and the Development Team collaborate on the details of Product Backlog items."

My question is here is:

"Often the Development Team has the domain knowledge to perform grooming itself” Does this line still holds good? Or the refinement of PB should always include Development team and PO?

03:54 am September 11, 2015

That line is from the earlier 2011 version of the Scrum Guide.

Product Backlog refinement should involve the Development Team and the Product Owner.

03:55 am September 11, 2015

The Product Owner is the grooming decision maker.
Grooming is not a process to break down the items in Sprint Backlog to dailty work.
Grooming refers to a set of three principal activities: adding details, estimating, and ordering.

Does the DT know all the details of each PBI?
Does the DT know which item is most valuable so that the item's priority should be reorder?

Grooming s an ongoing collaborateive effort led by the PO and including the DT, the SM as well as stakeholdes as needed.

12:12 pm September 12, 2015

PO is the sole responsible for the PB, while the DT is responsible for the estimates.
PO without DT estimates cannot properly order the PB.
It is an accountability issue. PO could delegate part of backlog work but he stills remain accountable.

BTW: DT can spend no more than 10% of its capacity for Backlog Refinement, while the PO can modify the PB any time.

03:15 pm September 12, 2015

Thank you for clarifying.

12:55 pm October 3, 2015

Hey, The word Grooming is long back replaced by a word called "refinement".

As Ching-Pei Li summarised it is collection of 3 major activities: Adding details through conversation between DT & PO (+SH); estimates by DT and slicing, as needed; and then finally ordering by PO.

01:48 am October 4, 2015

Hi Sowmya, I think we can find the answer in the following questions: Can DT estimate: YES.; Can DT explain : NO. Can DTperform ROI calculations for adding a feature and prioritize - NO. Therefore, DT may have the domain expertize. This may be useful in analysis and coding. But this cannot take away PO's perogatives.

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