Rainbow Sprints, What are they? and Why should we do it?

So before I wrote this post I did a quick google search to figure out what people believe a"Rainbow Sprint" is and it is completely different to what I originally thought so lets change that shall we. What I coin a "Rainbow Sprint" is "a sprint that contains multiple epics or team objectives that have been agreed in sprint planning".

Why is this important you ask? Well I bring this topic up as it is very easy for agile scrum teams to be in 110% feature mode and not be able to provide value to other areas of the team's responsibilities.

For example the scrum team have been allocated multiple features to deliver into production, let's call them feature "Green" and feature "Red". Priorities based on value and capacity do not allow the team to also have some tech debt "Blue" to close out and not to mention are wanting to continuously work on their automation framework "Purple".

Rainbow sprints are another term for what everyone knows as "DevOps" mixing development and IT operations into one software development methodology. By spending at least 10% of capacity working on non-feature related delivery could help ten fold in the long-term for example an improvement to the continuous integration pipeline and this can be defined by the team.


It does not need to be a strict 10/90 rule or 80/20 or even 60/20/20 rule but any kind of rule is better then none at all. So I urge teams, take the time to continuously improve and not just work on feature after feature. Think of sustainability over value as eventually it may just catch up with you and flip to the other end of the scale.