Definition of Ready - "Ready for Sprint Planning" (Part 2)

Continuing on from my previous post on Definition of Ready- "Ready for Refinement" (Part 1) today we look at the next step in the Definition of Ready. 

In my opinion one of the most important events a scrum team attends is a Backlog Refinement session. The Backlog Refinement session is crucial in setting the team up for success. The purpose: vision, understanding and agreement. It's almost like building a user manual for a Lego set, you get an amazing picture on the box of what you are building (vision), the parts that we need to build (understanding), the steps to build it (agreement)? You then should have everything you need to follow the steps one by one, and slowly build piece by piece. 

What does Ready for Sprint Planning mean?

That is what Backlog Refinement should achieve and this will then contribute to what it means to be "Ready for Sprint Planning" to complete your Definition of Ready checklist.
  1. Ready for Refinement
  2. Ready for Sprint Planning
The term "Ready for Sprint Planning" means that a user story for example, is fully understood by the team (to their best extent) and can be placed into a new sprint cycle with close to 100% certainty that we have everything we need to get it done!

Here are some examples of what it means to be Ready for Sprint Planning in relation to a user story:
  • The acceptance criteria is detailed in Given...When...Then format, including different scenarios
  • Is linked to an epic
  • Can be delivered in a sprint (or break down into smaller stories)
  • Is groomed and estimated (relative story sizing)
  • Prioritised to be picked up in a future sprint 
  • Contains clear business logic
  • Dependencies are identified and planned to align with sprints
  • Lists out other dependent stories and potential order of development
  • An impact analysis is completed
  • Analytics requirements are listed
  • Contains error handling
  • Responsiveness identified (Mobile, Tablet, Desktop)
  • Has attached artefacts (e.g. visual design, mapping, swagger)
The above list of examples are just a good starting point, allow your team to add, remove, on any one of these items depending on what you are trying to achieve.
definition of ready
If you feel like reading into more detail about what a good user story looks like, have a read of my previous post What makes an effective user story?.

Now that we have gone through the first two steps of the workflow Ready for Refinement and Ready for Sprint Planning, you and your team should now have a well detailed and agreed Definition of Ready and can start identifying the next step in the workflow to begin your Definition of Done.