When should be done Backlog Refinement Meeting?

Last post 06:26 am November 15, 2019
by Ian Mitchell
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04:18 am November 14, 2019

I am a new PO so please help me or guide to understand this better.

Per Scrum Guide, I do Sprint planning, my o/p is sprint goal and sprint backlog. I already come to the meeting with PBs and user stories. We do 2 week sprints.

Should I conduct Backlog Refinement meeting IN this sprint meeting?

Also, atlassian.com says the following

If you have a two-week sprint, run a backlog refinement meeting in the middle of the sprint. It’s great for the team to step back from the sprint and look at what's next. Not only does it help prepare for sprint planning, but also can give a different perspective for the current work.

What does run a backlog refinement meeting in the middle of sprint even mean? I thought we will have one refinement session per sprint and rest of status is done with daily scrum in tandem with looking into sprint backlog.

Also, Scrum guide says in the sprint backlog, add one item which aligns to process improvement from the previous retrospective. How do you guys do this? Any real example that you can give me is immensely useful.

Scrum guide says development team can't remove items from sprint backlog ONLY PO can do this. My development team tells me they can't complete one PB item as given in the sprint backlog. There was an issue (bug) that came up which my team had to concentrate. My plan of action is to add the unfinished item to Product Backlog. Go about prioritizing and then allow the development team to create sprint backlog again with the new PB that is created. I am trying to push the item to the next sprint. Is my process correct?

08:07 pm November 14, 2019

Should I conduct Backlog Refinement meeting IN this sprint meeting?

Backlog refinement is not a part of the Sprint Planning meeting. It is however an ongoing activity and the Scrum Team can decide how they should be conducting this.

The below excerpt from the Scrum Guide should clarify things regarding this question.

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. During Product Backlog refinement, items are reviewed and revised. The Scrum Team decides how and when refinement is done. Refinement usually consumes no more than 10% of the capacity of the Development Team.

 

08:20 pm November 14, 2019

Scrum guide says development team can't remove items from sprint backlog ONLY PO can do this.

Scrum Guide does NOT say this. It says "When elements of the plan are deemed unnecessary, they are removed. Only the Development Team can change its Sprint Backlog during a Sprint."

Don't confuse "deemed unnecessary" with deemed unable to be completed in time.

I thought we will have one refinement session per sprint and rest of status is done with daily scrum in tandem with looking into sprint backlog.

The purpose of the Daily Scrum is for the Dev team to prepare their plan for the day and not provide status for everything. They meet to ensure work is aligned by priority matching the Sprint Goal, identifying risks to completing the Sprint Goal and making progress that day, and together communicating what support they need before they get locked into their work for the day. It's to help them identify if they need support from anyone else on the team and to ensure no work performed is hidden from the Sprint Backlog.

Should I conduct Backlog Refinement meeting IN this sprint meeting?

Backlog Refinement is not a Scrum Event. It's optional use is to allow you and the team to help get the Backlog ready for Sprint Planning. Once the Backlog is healthy and you're prioritizing it daily, refinement would only ever happen as needed. To help you get there, anyone writing stories should know how to do so in such a way to have you as PO be able to effectively prioritize it. It's not to say each story needs to have all the details and be sized, but enough detail so that you can prioritize it by understanding the value of its completion. The rest of the details could come during Sprint Planning. Now, if the team isn't mature enough to be writing similar sized smaller stories, this effort could take considerable time. While that maturity is occuring, Backlog Refinement will also help get stories ready for Sprint Planning.

I am trying to push the item to the next sprint. Is my process correct?

If the bug is not deferrable, then the Story can't be called Done. There is no good reason to call the story done and push the bug to a future Sprint or Backlog unless it's deferrable and not directly caused by or preventing the ability for the value to be realized and functional.

06:26 am November 15, 2019

Should I conduct Backlog Refinement meeting IN this sprint meeting?

What are your thoughts about the team reserving up to 10% of their time during each Sprint for Product Backlog refinement activities?

Also, Scrum guide says in the sprint backlog, add one item which aligns to process improvement from the previous retrospective. How do you guys do this? Any real example that you can give me is immensely useful.

Let’s turn this around a bit. Can you give us an example of a process improvement which your team has identified?