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. However, Product Backlog items can be updated at any time by the Product Owner or at the Product Owner’s discretion.
Higher ordered Product Backlog items are usually clearer and more detailed than lower ordered ones. More precise estimates are made based on the greater clarity and increased detail; the lower the order, the less detail. Product Backlog items that will occupy the Development Team for the upcoming Sprint are refined so that any one item can reasonably be “Done” within the Sprint time-box. Product Backlog items that can be “Done” by the Development Team within one Sprint are deemed “Ready” for selection in a Sprint Planning. Product Backlog items usually acquire this degree of transparency through the above described refining activities.
The Development Team is responsible for all estimates. The Product Owner may influence the Development Team by helping it understand and select trade-offs, but the people who will perform the work make the final estimate.
The What is Scrum Blog Series are excerpts from the Scrum Guide by Ken Schwaber and Jeff Sutherland. Offered for license under the Attribution Share-Alike license of Creative Commons, accessible at http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/legalcode and also described in summary form at http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/.
- Scrum Foundations Course Video Series
- An Introduction to Scrum
- What Are the 3 Pillars of Scrum?
- What are the 5 Scrum Values?
- What is a Scrum Team?
- What is a Scrum Product Owner?
- What is a Scrum Development Team?
- What is the Ideal Size of a Scrum Development Team?
- What is a Scrum Master?
- What are the Scrum Events?
- What is a Sprint?
- Who can cancel a Sprint?
- What is Sprint Planning?
- What is a Sprint Goal?
- What is a Daily Scrum?
- What is a Sprint Review?
- What is a Sprint Retrospective?
- What are the Scrum Artifacts?
- What is a Product Backlog?
- What is Product Backlog Refinement or Grooming?
- What is a Sprint Backlog?
- What is a Product Increment?
- What is a Definition of “Done”?
- Who is Monitoring Progress?
- The Importance of Artifact Transparency