A product backlog represents the way forward for your organization’s product.
Establishing and sustaining a backlog, and the supporting processes round it, is without doubt one of the most essential issues you are able to do to align your organization’s assets to your organization’s imaginative and prescient.
On this put up you’ll learn to create a product backlog and why it’s so essential. You’ll additionally be capable to obtain our product backlog template that can assist you get began.
What Is a Product Backlog?
A product backlog is a prioritized checklist of options, bugs, person expertise updates and different enhancements that growth groups have gathered from varied product stakeholders.
Backlog objects must be prioritized within the order of their general return on funding, which makes an attempt to stability the hassle to finish the duty with the enterprise worth achieved by conducting it.
Establishing a backlog can’t be a one-time factor. The help processes round backlog administration and upkeep are simply as essential because the product’s success.
Why Create a Product Backlog?
Backlogs are helpful for a lot of functions. You need to use your backlog to plan roadmaps, plan engineering efforts akin to sprints, doc product necessities over time, seize bugs and person expertise enhancements and extra.
Most of all, the backlog acts because the touchdown spot for all info that is available in from varied product stakeholders, then aligns product enhancements with that info over time.
How Do You Create a Product Backlog?
Comply with these three steps to learn to create a product backlog:
1. Set up a Backlog Framework
Step one to making a product backlog is establishing the framework. You’ll wish to have the next capabilities:
Prioritized checklist: You’ll want to have the ability to make a listing of things and proceed to replace them in a single-priority order. That’s proper, there can solely be one hottest merchandise on the high of your checklist. A single-priority view is admittedly the one technique to perceive an merchandise’s true significance to the enterprise.
Stakeholder monitoring: Who created the merchandise, who has enter into the necessities and who’s at the moment assigned to work on the merchandise?
Merchandise varieties: We like to make use of 4 merchandise varieties: Function, Help Problem, Engineering Activity and Bug.
Merchandise standing: You’ll have to hold monitor of standing all through the lifecycle. We use the next standing updates:
- Reported: recognized however not mentioned but
- Wants Extra Information: extra analysis is critical earlier than prioritizing
- Not Began: mentioned and prioritized accordingly
- Blocked: one thing else must be accomplished first
- In Progress: actively being labored on
- In Evaluate: accomplished and awaiting log off
- Resolved: utterly completed
2. Select a Product Backlog Instrument
There are a number of instruments you should utilize to your backlog, from a spreadsheet all the way in which to extra specialised product administration software program. Crucial parts out of your tooling ought to be capable to get developer and product administration purchase in and be simple to work in. In the event you work in an agile course of, you’ll wish to select a software that works nicely with agile greatest practices.
Listed here are some product backlog instruments that we’ve seen work nicely:
Atlassian Jira has been a well-established participant on this area for a few years. Jira is highly effective and could be prolonged to do nearly something your online business will throw at it, however can generally be a bit extra to handle than is required for some firms. It is a nice selection for medium-size to massive engineering organizations with extra operational necessities.
Previously referred to as Clubhouse, Shortcut offers versatile tooling and nice collaborative product backlog options to assist groups plan and develop.
Notion offers a simple to make use of collaboration framework with a versatile database construction that may properly help backlogs. Notion lacks a number of the automation and workflows the opposite instruments use, nevertheless, and is likely to be higher suited to small to medium-size engineering organizations.
Trello and Asana
Trello and Asana each provide comparable kanban and different views right into a undertaking administration backlog.
3. Product Backlog Administration
There are a pair important backlog administration processes it is best to implement. Be sure to have an final supervisor, typically the product supervisor or product proprietor, who will likely be accountable for managing the backlog. They need to run the next common crew conferences:
Backlog grooming is when the crew discusses and prioritizes any new backlog objects. Ingesting these things appropriately is essential for crew alignment, capturing any further info or necessities and prioritizing in keeping with enterprise worth and technical readiness.
Engineering Consumption or Dash Planning
Be sure to have common conferences for engineering to consumption new necessities and align growth efforts to the backlog. You’ll be assigning the highest unresolved objects within the backlog to numerous members in your engineering group for growth.
Backlog Administration Finest Practices
General, operating an efficient backlog is extra of an artwork than a science. There aren’t sufficient hours within the day to completely ingest each piece of context to your future product in a wonderfully prioritized checklist. You’ll want logic, so we recommend following these backlog administration greatest practices:
Keep away from A number of Backlogs
The act of discussing and prioritizing all the longer term product options and enhancements in a single spot is important. In case you have totally different stakeholders with their very own priorities, or duplicate objects, you’ll by no means drive alignment inside your product growth group.
Set up Totally different Views
Be sure to allow a number of totally different views out of the identical backlog knowledge to accommodate varied enterprise wants. For instance, your customer support crew ought to be capable to view the standing of all their requests, whereas higher administration ought to be capable to perceive long-term roadmap implications — along with having all the normal backlog grooming and dash execution views.
Set up a Tradition of Documentation
Any time a crew member hears or discusses necessities or priorities round a function, be sure they embody it within the backlog. If documentation turns into a part of the way in which you’re employed, it’ll by no means seem to be a frightening job to jot down necessities or handle the backlog.
Above all else, simply get began. You don’t have to have 1,000 objects within the backlog on day one. Start with what’s in your thoughts at this time, and hold iterating from there.
Get Your Product Backlog Template
Utilizing a longtime product backlog template will ensure you have the fitting framework to get began. In the event you determine to make use of a SaaS software particularly for backlogs or agile processes, you’ll know that you’ve got the fitting basis to construct on.
In the event you don’t have any of those instruments, obtain our product backlog template from Notion. Merely click on right here after which choose Duplicate on the high of the display.