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Product Backlog Refinement

Product Backlog items (PBI) evolve over time. They start as vague ideas and are improved as more information is uncovered. Eventually they are well enough defined that they can be brought onto a Sprint Backlog.

The activity of continually improving PBIs until they are ready to be worked on is called “refinement.” Most Scrum Teams refine during working sessions in which they have focused discussions about the items in the Product Backlog. During these sessions they create a shared understanding of the goals for each item and discuss the order of the items in the backlog.

Refinement of the Product Backlog may happen many times during the Sprint. In some Sprints, the PBIs at the top of the backlog may be sufficiently refined and refinement may not be needed at all. Therefore, Product Backlog refinement is not a prescribed event in Scrum.

However, in order to create greater clarity and a shared understanding, it is good practice to have the Product Owner, Developers and appropriate stakeholders engage in refinement discussions on a regular basis. Self-managing teams determine how often refinement should happen, as well as who should attend each session.




In this video you will get some helpful tips for facilitating a Product Backlog refinement session. (4:41 Minutes)
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The Product Backlog represents all of the work the Scrum Team knows it needs to do in order to deliver the product. Teams can use the Product Backlog to make decisions about what they should do next. Learn about the Product Backlog, Product Goal, Product Backlog items and Product Backlog refinement.