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Can sprint planning take place if half of the team are on annual leave?

Last post 03:57 pm June 28, 2023 by Nicholas Gabrichidze
3 replies
12:56 pm June 27, 2023

I have a situation where I have 2 scrum teams. Some of the team are based in Slovakia and as such there is a Bank Holiday which falls on a sprint planning day. 

In your opinion what would be the best approach? to move the sprint planning out by a day or hold the sprint planning and then allocate the work to the members of the team to work on when they return?

08:02 am June 28, 2023

If the entire Scrum Team is missing the Sprint planning will not serve its purpose.

What is the level of dependency between the two Scrum Teams? If they are highly independent it might make sense to start planning with the 1st Team and continue the next day when the 2nd team is back in the office. However, this very much depends on the circumstances, such as the level of your Backlog organization, refinement, the dependency between the teams etc. So, it might make more sense just to wait until the 2nd team is back. 

If you are the SM for those teams, I recommend working with the Scrum Teams to figure it out. 



10:31 am June 28, 2023

My advice is to be quite clear about whether you have two teams, or one team half of which is in Slovakia. Without this transparency accountabilities and commitments will be compromised, and there can be no Sprint Planning at all.

03:57 pm June 28, 2023

In general when Scrum event falls into some national holliday, it is obvious to have it next working day. 

If team members are on vacation is another thing.

Should Sprint planning take place immedeately after Sprint retrospective, even if some team members are absent for whatever reason? Yes it should, in a same way like Daily Scrum takes place even if few team members are stuck in the traffic jam and cant come.

Team should consider absence of the members and plan the next Sprint accordingly, adjusting to the reduced size,  estimating efforts. 

The issue should be addressed at retrospective.

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