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Agile beyond IT – Streamlining The Recruitment Process

Recruitment is a challenging, time-consuming and costly process. It is not only challenging for the recruiter, but also challenging for the candidates.In one of my previous engagements, I had a chance to work with the hiring team to help streamline the Agile recruitment process and make it a wow experience for the recruiters as well as for the candidates. I would like to share the experience we had and how we built an improved Agile recruitment process by streamlining the process.The Challenge: Making the Agile recruitment process more streamlined and visibleFor one of the organizations distributed geographically, we had vacancies across various skill sets to be fulfilled within a certain timeline. However, we faced certain challenges which were typical to any hiring processes.Identifying the right talent and making the whole hiring process faster, visible and streamlined was an issue.Few of the challenges which we faced are listed below:Usage of the traditional talent acquisition tool for tracking the candidate’s profile.Prioritization is usually by whoever shouts loudest.The process was not harmonized across all business units.Non-availability of interviewer to interview the candidates.No established feedback communication channel (candidate and all stakeholders).Usage of too many spreadsheets, recurring meetings, emails for synchronization resulting in:Delay in responding back to the candidates.Delay in sharing the updates on the fulfillment leading to dissatisfaction among the candidates, hiring managers as well as the client.How did we get started?To respond to the above challenges, a meeting was scheduled between the recruitment team, engineering team and we brainstormed and identified a few of the pain areas that needed to be addressed on priority.One of the things which the team identified was that with multiple meetings, e-mails with CV from various sources, there was a delay in identifying and interviewing the candidate and that made the whole candidates suffer.At the same time, we had the executives and business heads across the various business units looking for a consolidated report on the status of the number of open positions and the hiring pipeline daily.So, we planned with priorities and focused on resolving the following-Make the candidate interviewing and onboarding process faster.Provide better visibility and reports to the senior management.Faster feedback mechanism.Agile and Kanban- Tools to make an Agile recruitment process efficientWe all know that the recruitment process is very dynamic. With every iteration, the requirement for the fulfilment may tend to change. To have a better control over the recruitment process and a quick adoption, Agile recruitment seems to be the way forward.As a team, we decided to start with Kanban and the reasons for the same are mentioned below:There was no need to change the current workflow to adopt this process of visualization.We tweaked a little bit and used only the visualization principles to help visualize the flow.We wanted to ensure that everybody has a visual representation of the workflow to help identify the bottlenecks. All the stakeholders became aware of the profiles in the pipeline and how we are moving across the different stages. It helped identify any bottleneck in the flow and take remedial actions.Focus on flowOur aim was to help decrease the candidate’s waiting time. By focusing on the flow of our hiring process, we wanted to spot issues before they arise and help improve communications as well as the candidate profile aging over time.Practice continuous feedback.Frequent connect to review, reflect and make suggestions for further improvement. Tweak wherever necessary.It offers the flexibility to the team.How did the process work?We started first with the candidate board to keep track of each of the candidate through the recruitment process. We started to map out the different steps that follow a candidate through our process and accordingly map each columnBelow is the sample Kanban board in Trello-This helped the team in visualization and identifying the bottleneck leading to a quicker resolution.How did we improve?We could see that the recruitment process was on its path to getting streamlined but as a team, we used to reflect and looked at ways of improving the process. We did the following:Had daily and weekly catch up and used to take feedback on what areas we can improve upon and accordingly modify the board.After a few months, we realized that we need to track the candidate’s onboarding to help the candidate’s experience to turn out to WOW. We updated the board to include the same.We also realized that the profiles can come from various sources (internal, referral, agencies etc.). We looked at updating the board to capture the source of the profile.How Kanban helped in creating an Agile hiring process?We knew that we were on the right track when we started visualizing the following:1. Focus on Priority Items:Everybody knew what’s coming down the pipeline, and we were ready for it.Candidate profiles didn’t get lost in the process.Helped in better prioritization of the demand.2. Increased Visibility:We could see the problems before they happened and pivoted.Greater visibility of the candidate status in the hiring process.3. Increased Communication:Faster decision making on the candidature.Quicker feedback to the candidate on the profile status.Better communication between hiring, engineering, management and customer.Building and fostering a collaborative environment.4. Time-saving:Time-saving by scrapping many meetings and e-mail loops.Applying Agile principles to the hiring process is not simple. It involves re-inventing the current process and applying the principles.However, Agile implementation in hiring process doesn’t need to be complicated in the beginning. We need to  look at the current process and identify the areas where we can leverage and improve the process.
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Agile beyond IT – Streamlining The Recruitment Process

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Agile beyond IT – Streamlining The Recruitment Process

Recruitment is a challenging, time-consuming and costly process. It is not only challenging for the recruiter, but also challenging for the candidates.

In one of my previous engagements, I had a chance to work with the hiring team to help streamline the Agile recruitment process and make it a wow experience for the recruiters as well as for the candidates. I would like to share the experience we had and how we built an improved Agile recruitment process by streamlining the process.

The Challenge: Making the Agile recruitment process more streamlined and visible

For one of the organizations distributed geographically, we had vacancies across various skill sets to be fulfilled within a certain timeline. However, we faced certain challenges which were typical to any hiring processes.

Identifying the right talent and making the whole hiring process faster, visible and streamlined was an issue.

Few of the challenges which we faced are listed below:

  • Usage of the traditional talent acquisition tool for tracking the candidate’s profile.
  • Prioritization is usually by whoever shouts loudest.
  • The process was not harmonized across all business units.
  • Non-availability of interviewer to interview the candidates.
  • No established feedback communication channel (candidate and all stakeholders).
  • Usage of too many spreadsheets, recurring meetings, emails for synchronization resulting in:
  • Delay in responding back to the candidates.
  • Delay in sharing the updates on the fulfillment leading to dissatisfaction among the candidates, hiring managers as well as the client.

How did we get started?
To respond to the above challenges, a meeting was scheduled between the recruitment team, engineering team and we brainstormed and identified a few of the pain areas that needed to be addressed on priority.One of the things which the team identified was that with multiple meetings, e-mails with CV from various sources, there was a delay in identifying and interviewing the candidate and that made the whole candidates suffer.

At the same time, we had the executives and business heads across the various business units looking for a consolidated report on the status of the number of open positions and the hiring pipeline daily.

So, we planned with priorities and focused on resolving the following-

  • Make the candidate interviewing and onboarding process faster.
  • Provide better visibility and reports to the senior management.
  • Faster feedback mechanism.

Agile and Kanban- Tools to make an Agile recruitment process efficient

We all know that the recruitment process is very dynamic. With every iteration, the requirement for the fulfilment may tend to change. To have a better control over the recruitment process and a quick adoption, Agile recruitment seems to be the way forward.

As a team, we decided to start with Kanban and the reasons for the same are mentioned below:

  • There was no need to change the current workflow to adopt this process of visualization.
  • We tweaked a little bit and used only the visualization principles to help visualize the flow.
  • We wanted to ensure that everybody has a visual representation of the workflow to help identify the bottlenecks. All the stakeholders became aware of the profiles in the pipeline and how we are moving across the different stages. It helped identify any bottleneck in the flow and take remedial actions.
  • Focus on flow
    Our aim was to help decrease the candidate’s waiting time. By focusing on the flow of our hiring process, we wanted to spot issues before they arise and help improve communications as well as the candidate profile aging over time.
  • Practice continuous feedback.
  • Frequent connect to review, reflect and make suggestions for further improvement. Tweak wherever necessary.
  • It offers the flexibility to the team.

How did the process work?

We started first with the candidate board to keep track of each of the candidate through the recruitment process. We started to map out the different steps that follow a candidate through our process and accordingly map each column

Below is the sample Kanban board in Trello-
This helped the team in visualization and identifying the bottleneck leading to a quicker resolution.

How did we improve?

We could see that the recruitment process was on its path to getting streamlined but as a team, we used to reflect and looked at ways of improving the process. We did the following:

  • Had daily and weekly catch up and used to take feedback on what areas we can improve upon and accordingly modify the board.
  • After a few months, we realized that we need to track the candidate’s onboarding to help the candidate’s experience to turn out to WOW. We updated the board to include the same.
  • We also realized that the profiles can come from various sources (internal, referral, agencies etc.). We looked at updating the board to capture the source of the profile.

How Kanban helped in creating an Agile hiring process?
We knew that we were on the right track when we started visualizing the following:

1. Focus on Priority Items:

  • Everybody knew what’s coming down the pipeline, and we were ready for it.
  • Candidate profiles didn’t get lost in the process.
  • Helped in better prioritization of the demand.

2. Increased Visibility:

  • We could see the problems before they happened and pivoted.
  • Greater visibility of the candidate status in the hiring process.

3. Increased Communication:

  • Faster decision making on the candidature.
  • Quicker feedback to the candidate on the profile status.
  • Better communication between hiring, engineering, management and customer.
  • Building and fostering a collaborative environment.

4. Time-saving:

  • Time-saving by scrapping many meetings and e-mail loops.

Applying Agile principles to the hiring process is not simple. It involves re-inventing the current process and applying the principles.

However, Agile implementation in hiring process doesn’t need to be complicated in the beginning. We need to  look at the current process and identify the areas where we can leverage and improve the process.

Lopamudra

Lopamudra Misra

Blog Author

An agile practitoner passionate about working with people , teams and create a culture of WOW.

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How to Use Scrum Board for Agile Development

What is a Scrum Board?A Scrum Board or an Agile Board is a visual representation of the work planned, progressed, and completed by a scrum team in a sprint or iteration at any given point of time. The board is comprised of columns that represent various successive states of the workflow progressing from left to right. The work items appear in the column as per their current state in the development workflow and then move across the board from one column to the next till they reach completion or last stage.The “To Do / Ready” and “Done” states appear in almost every Scrum Board, the “In Progress” items can be further categorized into various states e.g. – Analyse, Design, Code, Test etc. These states are solely created as per the needs of the Scrum Team and Project.Image 1: Simple Scrum Board  Why is a Scrum Board needed? The Scrum Board visually represents the amount of work along with their current states in a Sprint.  The Board speaks to the team everyday about the holistic progress made by the entire team towards their Sprint Goals and provides a sense of accomplishment and achievement when work items are completed. It avoids creation and progress of “Hidden Work” or “Shoulder Tap” injected work that may not be prioritized. In the event of an interruption (like production issue, any new or changed requirements, changed priorities), it helps Business to reprioritize the work items quickly looking at the current state of the planned items in the Sprint.   It also keeps reinforcing road blocks and impediments faced by the team to all the major stakeholders. Any number of written and verbal communication may not be able to visually represent the state of the entire sprintas a whole as effectively as this visual radiator.Scrum board allows teams to manage the flow of work across the sprint as it helps in avoiding multi-tasking, overloading one person because everything is visible and traceable. How to organize a Scrum Board Physical and Virtual Scrum Boards Teams that are entirely collocated can benefit from physical boards that caneven just be a whiteboard placed near their work cubicles. A physical board could also be on a wall having coloured tape for columns and sticky notes for cards.  Team members typically swarm around the board /agile wall/task wallduring their daily stand up or whenever there is a need.   Image 2: A typical physical scrum boardImage 3: A typical Jira scrum boardDistributed teams on the other hand find virtual boards easy to use. There are many tools available in the market to set up Scrum Boardssuch asJira , Rally , Monday.com etc.  In some companies, the Scrum boards are displayed on giant monitors placed near the teams work cubicles. Cards and Columns are the two basic entities on the scrum board.Card is the entity on the board that represents a “Work Item”. A Card can be a User story /Production Bug/Technical Task. During the course of the Sprint these cards travel through the board from left ,“To-Do” to right “Done”.  A Simple Scrum Board for Beginner Teams The Scrum Board below is an example of a typical team board in a software project. Image 4: Typical scrum board for a software projectThe items on the Product Backlog are discussed and as per priority and their readiness, pulled into the “To Do” or “Ready” column during Sprint Planning. At the beginning of a Sprint all items in the “To Do” or “Ready” column comprises the Sprint Backlog of the team. As the Sprint progresses, the items move into the downstream columns until “Done” is reached. A clear “Definition of Done” helps to conclude if the story / task is completed. Usually beginner teams build the board translating the current workflow of their work items into columns on the board. 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Cards could also be flagged (in the case of a Virtual board) or overlaid with a (preferably) Red coloured card to convey a risk/dependency that needs attention. Swim lanes Defining Swim lanes is a very useful mechanism to categorize the work items on a Scrum Board. They are horizontal rows on the board that carry a specific type of work that is different from the normal/ work categorized by a certain parameter. For e.g. a team that has to resolve emerging high priority production bugs would prefer to use a “Fast Track” swim lane to progress the bug and then continue with their original Sprint work. A team that works on hardware, firmware and software components in a sprint might want to use different swim lanes for each component.  Swim lanes are for the teams. 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It is day 6 of a 10-day Sprint.  Developers might now bring in H, I from the Ready Column to start development work, creating a bottleneck at Testing. Image 6: Scrum Board without WIP LimitsConcepts of Kanban can be borrowed into a typical Scrum board to address this. One of the techniques that can be used is to split the column into “In Progress” and “Ready”. 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How to Use Scrum Board for Agile Development

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Scrum Master Job Descriptions and Responsibilities In Agile

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Good scrum masters are committed to the scrum foundation and values, but remain flexible and open to opportunities for the team to improve their workflow. The Scrum Master is responsible for promoting and supporting Scrum as defined in the Scrum Guide. They do this by helping the team and the management understand the theory, practices, rules, and values of Scrum.  Roles of a Scrum Master  The scrum master is the role responsible for glueing everything together and ensuring that scrum is being done well. In practical terms, that means they help the product owner define value, the development team deliver the value, and the scrum team to get better. The scrum master is a servant leader which not only describes a supportive style of leadership but describes what they do on a day-to-day basis. The several ways that a Scrum master services the product owner, the Scrum Team and the organization are elaborated below:  The Scrum Master wears different hats to deliver results. The four main stances of a Scrum Master are explained below:  1. As a Facilitator The Scrum Master is a facilitator who makes sure the team is following the scrum events by serving and empowering the team in achieving their objectives. The person must be ‘neutral’ without taking sides in any conversation or meeting, at the same time, back everyone to do their best in intellectual and in practice. On the lines of facilitation, Lyssa Adkins provides a very apt statement:   A Scrum Master should facilitate by creating a "container" for the team to fill up with their ideas and innovations. The container, often a set of agenda questions or some other lightweight (and flexible) structure, gives the team just enough of a frame to stay on their purpose and promotes an environment for richer interaction, a place where fantastic ideas can be heard. The coach creates the container; the team creates the content. - Lyssa Adkins 2. As a Coach The Scrum Master helps the team to understand the framework and accordingly coaches them for being self-organized and cross-functional. This person inspires an outlook of continuous improvement and Back the team in problem-solving and conflict resolution.   3. As a Servant Leader The term Servant Leader was originated by Robert K. Greenleaf, who described this term as “The servant-leader is servant first. It begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve. Then conscious choice brings one to aspire to lead.”  The servant-leader is servant first. It begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve. Then conscious choice brings one to aspire to lead. - Robert K. Greenleaf  This person ‘leads by example’ and puts the team/individuals' needs on priority. They make sure they are setting the foundation of trust, honesty, transparency, and openness. At the same time, they are the leader whom the team can look up to.   4. As a Change Agent The scrum Master brings about the change in terms of process, practices, and ways of working. They act as a catalyst in the overall transformation to bring about the degree of change expected from an organization. They help the team follow the process along with helping the stakeholders understand the empirical process. They help the entire team to adopt processes and enhance the delivery.  Scrum myth: The scrum master must run the daily scrum. In fact, the scrum master does not run any of the events, just ensures they happen and that they are successful. Top Qualities of a Successful Scrum Master  As with other roles, there is a secret sauce that goes into making the Scrum Master successful. While every individual serving as a Scrum Master may bring along their own personalities and strengths to reinforce the role, there are a couple of must-have qualities which every individual donning the Scrum Master role must hone. Let’s take a quick look at these traits that can add a pinch of charm to the Scrum Master role.  Powerful Communicator: The Scrum Master needs to be very specific and clear on the communication they have with the team and with stakeholders. They must be aware of the right channels and when to use them. They should know how to influence teams for better results.  Inspires Ownership: A good Scrum Master helps the team to understand Agile principles and why the team can gain better results through the adoption of ownership. They help the team to take ownership of their tasks, their task board, process, and even small failures.  Read the Room: The Scrum Master should be able to understand and sense the temperature of the room. They should know when conflict is cropping up and how to deal with it smartly. This helps to build a culture of trust and transparency amongst the teams.  Impartial: The Scrum Master can become a star leader if they are neutral towards any situation or the individual. They focus on the problem rather on the individual. They know every individual is good and has the right intentions, it is just the situations that alter the way the team behaves. This not only helps in creating a rapport but also gives one the satisfaction of doing the right thing.   Scrum Master Job Description and Responsibilities  With the increase in demand for Scrum Masters globally, it is important to understand the job description. Every industry is different and so are their ways of working. While each organization may have their own versions of the job description for a Scrum Master as per their need in a project, we will take a closer look into the typical job description that organizations use.   Below are some of the common points you will usually find in an open position for a Scrum Master:  Standups: Organize daily stand-up meetings, facilitate, and plan other project meetings as required including demos as suitable.  Sprint reviews: Empower the team to become self-organized to consistently deliver on their sprint commitments.  Adoption of best practices: Ensure development teams enthusiastically apply core agile principles of collaboration, prioritization, accountability, and visibility.  Impediment removal: Responsible to address impediments that prevent successful development and testing of approved requirements.  Visualization of issues: Support team to detect barriers that prevent it from delivering features to the customers.  Agile master: Strong knowledge of Scrum philosophy, rules, practices, and other frameworks.  Understanding of the software development process: Familiarity with software development processes and measures to understand team requirements.  Process ownership: Harmonize scrum team with agile; collaborate with Leadership to ensure delivery teams practice Agile framework and software engineering best practices.  Stakeholder management: Work in partnership with Stakeholders, Product Managers, Business Analysts, and development managers to plan releases and manage a healthy product backlog  Metrics/reports: Endorse and present appropriate metrics to sustain continuous improvement to get the best out of each team. Report progress, team status, and issues across the board.  Transparency: Communicate development status to sponsors, participants, management, and teams. Shares weekly or bi-weekly reports to ensure everyone understands the current state.   Quality: Safeguard observance of quality standards and project deliverables. Understand principles to drive quality ethics and help in devising tools and practices for best end results.   How can I prepare for this role?  Donning the role of a Scrum Master is akin to heeding to an internal calling; the role requires a person to be patient, a good communicator, a good listener, and most of all emotionally intelligent. If you want to become a Scrum Master, make sure you understand the in-depth meaning of servant leadership. It is not just following the process and events that make up a Scrum Master, it is a huge role which requires leadership while serving the team. If this is your calling, then here are some steps you can take –   Start learning about Scrum and how effectively you can use its values and principles with your team  Start reading articles and blogs on best practices with success stories.  Prepare for the certification required to start your journey.  Make sure you have a mentor who can shape you well and can help you hone your skills  Continuously work on your communication and influencing skills.  Is it essential for a Scrum Master to possess technical knowledge?  Of late, we have started noticing many job postings where organizations specifically demand a Scrum Master who is technically sound and knows the in and out of the technology the team is working on. Traditionally, however, Scrum Master is a non-technical role where the focus is on improving the work culture, adopting Scrum/Agile and its best practices, and helping the teams to grow, become self-organized and high performing. While it is a good-to-have criterion, technical knowledge is not mandatory. But then again, it really depends on the organization and their need.  Get started with the Scrum Master role  If you want to help teams work effectively together and want to change the world with scrum and agile, then the scrum master role is for you. It is a very people-centric role with a heavy emphasis on coaching, teaching, and facilitation. The Scrum Master role can be a game-changer for project delivery. They help the team understand their true potential which most of the times teams themselves are not aware of, with the help of coaching, mentoring, and using engaging team activities that help in understanding the overall process and delivery.  The Scrum Master role is critical and needs to be handled with care as the stakes are high. This role has a high degree of accountability and responsibility towards the team, process, and organization which not only requires an open mindset but also a concern for the wellbeing of co-workers. If lived to its full potential, this role can build awesome high-performing teams that sustain hardships and efficiently draw learning out of every experience. Such teams are bound to succeed at every step, taking even failure as a step towards success. 
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Scrum Master Job Descriptions and Responsibilities...

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Scrum Product Backlog and Agile Product Backlog Prioritization

The 21st century has witnessed a major surge in the adoption of Agile with organizations trying to fit into their ways of working to better meet customer demands. As per the 14th Annual State of Agile 2020, 58% of the respondents were using Scrum as the framework for product delivery. It has been noticed that Agile and Scrum are considered as the same thing. Scrum is a subset of Agile where Agile is a way or method of implementing frameworks like Scrum, Kanban, etc. Agile is a timeboxed, iterative way of software delivery focusing on faster time to market and customer collaboration. With a great framework like Scrum, Agile gets a runway to deliver quality products in an iterative, incremental, and timeboxed manner. Talking of product development, be it any framework, we start with the creation of the requirement list. The same applies to Agile too. Here, we term this as “Backlog”. I am often asked about the origin of the term, “Backlog”. Why “backlog” and why not some other word? Well, the term dates back to the 1680s when large logs were placed at the back of a fire to keep the blaze going and concentrate the heat. By the 1880s, the term was adopted in its figurative sense of "something stored up for later use". So, a Backlog is a prioritized list of items the teams’ need to work for the successful delivery of a product. How extensively are Scrum artifacts, and in particular, the product backlog and sprint backlog used? Source: 14th State of Agile 2020According to the State of Scrum 2015 report, surprisingly, only 56% of the respondents reported using extensive scrum artifacts like Product Backlog and Sprint Backlog. Major success criteria for any Agile project lie in its backlog and it demands a lot of focus both in terms of keeping it refined and updated with current situation. Thankfully, it is the topic of the day, and here we will talk more about it! Product Backlog  What is a Product Backlog? The Product Backlog is the ordered list of requirements of all that is required to successfully deliver it to the client. It contains the prioritized list of requirements that can be detailed or vague and has everything that needs to be done for a particular product. One can visualize it as a big bucket that has all the items/necessities needed for a product to be successful and competitive in nature.  Who owns the Product Backlog? The Product Backlog is primarily handled by the Product Owner who takes care of the client's needs and makes sure the product backlog represents the exact requirement. The product owner is responsible for keeping the backlog healthy and in a state that is readily consumable by the team. The product backlog is never frozen, the items can change as per the demand and market scenario. Anyone can suggest items to be added in the list but the final say will always be on the Product Owner.  Example of a Product Backlog Let’s look at an example to further understand it better: Build a mobile application for a local bank so that the users can access the bank on the go. Product Backlog would look like: S. No.RequirementPriority1Create a sign in page for the usersHigh2Create a logout pageHigh3Create a home page to land after successful sign in to the applicationHigh4Create a page for AccountsMedium5Create a page for Money TransferMedium6Create a page for LoansMedium7Create a page for User ProfileLow8Create a page for 'Contact Us' sectionLowThere can be multiple other requirements both front-end and back-end to get this mobile application delivered, but, here for understanding, we are just taking a few of them. Each item in the list will have a priority attached to it, this makes it easy for the development team to pick work once they are done with the one in hand. Product Backlog can also be termed as the master list of requirements. Sprint Backlog What is a Sprint Backlog? Sprint Backlog is a list derived from the product backlog or the master list. When teams start working in Scrum, they have sprints which are a timebox for delivery, it defines when a customer can expect the shipment and at what intervals. The period can range from a week to a months’ timeline. Here, in sprints, the team pulls the work from the product backlog as per the priority and their capacity and put it in a smaller bucket called ‘Sprint Backlog’. It is like delivering the big Product Backlog in chunks called “Sprint Backlog’. The Sprint Backlog can also be defined as a subset of superset ‘Product Backlog’. For a successful product delivery, both are essential, and hence the need to keep them healthy.  Who owns the Sprint Backlog? Sprint backlog is owned by the scrum team, and together, they create their sprint board which consists of the user stories, bugs (if any), and spikes. It is the development team who determines the Sprint Backlog. Here, the Scrum Master can facilitate the Sprint Planning meeting to help the team come up with the Sprint Backlog. The scrum team utilizes the sprint planning meeting to discuss on the sprint goal and the commitment they can make for the upcoming sprint. They pull the items to discuss from the top of the list and create their sprint backlog according to the capacity and complexity of parameters.  Example of a Sprint Backlog So, the sprint backlog is a subset of product backlog and going back to our example let's create a Sprint backlog now: S.No.RequirementPriority1Create a sign in page for the usersHigh2Create a logout pageHigh3Create a home page to land after successful sign-in to the applicationHighIn our example, we have pulled the sprint backlog items from the master list which was already in a prioritized state. Product Backlog vs Scrum Backlog: Understanding the difference The Scrum Master can help the development team understand the difference between Product Backlog and the Sprint Backlog, this can be done through coaching the teams about the process and the Scrum artifacts and can help the Product owner in maintaining a healthy backlog. The team uses Product Backlog to create their sprint backlog. During the Sprint planning meeting, the development team should talk about the complexity and the efforts needed to get the job done. They pull the items from the product backlog to the Sprint Backlog to be completed in the sprint time-box. How to create a more effective Product Backlog? Effective Product Backlog depends on a clear understanding of the result and the need. The Product Owner must clearly define the requirements that have details enough for the team to get a clear picture of what is needed to be done. The product backlog needs to be a thorough list of all the work that must be done to get the project delivered successfully. Once a high-level list is created, the development team can help in further refining and creating an exhaustive backlog with all the technical aspects needed to deliver the functional side. Creating a backlog should be a collective team effort, this also helps in bringing about the ownership and collaborative environment amongst the group. Though the development team can help the Product Owner in creating a proper efficient Product Backlog, the sole responsibility for the Product Backlog lies with the Product Owner. How to create a better Sprint Backlog? Once you have a good Product Backlog, pulling out the Sprint Backlog gets easy. Sprint Backlog gets its shape during the sprint planning meeting which is the first thing in a new iteration where the team sits together, either, physically or virtually, to discuss the requirements they can work on in a new sprint. Essentially the discussion circles the functionalities, the technical aspect around it, and how much they can load in an iteration. Here, the Scrum Master can help the team with excellent facilitation skills to come up with a sprint goal as a joint team effort. The team pulls up the highest priority items from the product backlog to discuss functionality and complexity, they also converse on the steps they could take to reach the goal. What are the benefits of Backlog prioritization? Prioritization is one of the critical aspects of a Product Backlog that helps in keeping it in a healthy state. Let’s look at a few of the benefits of prioritizing the backlog: Helps in the Sprint Planning with the story selection as the Product Backlog is already Prioritized. Better visibility to pull items during the iteration if the team has the bandwidth. Effective risk management due to pre-known issues during the grooming of the backlog Improved supervision of dependencies Early return of investment as the requirement follows value-based delivery.What are the different prioritization techniques or methods of prioritizing the Backlog?After talking about the Backlog and its benefits, let’s look at the various techniques of prioritization:Tool 1: MoSCoW Method – Developed by Dai Clegg, this is the most widely used model while prioritizing the backlog. The name itself has the meaning - Must Have, Should Have, Could Have, and Won’t Have.Tool 2: Kano Model - In the 1980s Kano Model was developed by Professor Noriaki Kano. Under the Kano Model, items are categorized according to the requirements and opportunities of the stakeholders. The categories are – ‘Basic expectations’, ‘Satisfiers’, ‘Delighters’.Tool 3: Stack Ranking – During Stack Ranking the items are placed in the order of priority which starts with one and goes up to the number of items in the backlog. Tool 4: Cost Of Delay – To measure the cost of delay one needs to understand: “What will be the cost per time unit if we delayed delivery?” This is difficult to measure sometimes if you don’t use the correct parameters. This figure states how much money every month it will cost your organization to delay the delivery of the finished project. In practical life, we all have experienced ‘cost of delay’ whether it is starting late for work or starting up late with a new assignment.Conclusion In conclusion, we have seen that both the Product Backlog and Sprint Backlog are different entities tied together to the same group. It plays a crucial role in software delivery and helps the team deliver efficient solutions through effective backlog management tools and techniques. If the teams understand and use their backlog in a desired way, they can help the customers and the management in better delivery and gaining of new opportunities. 
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