About Sprints, Scrum and project management

Azure Boards | Azure DevOps Server 2019 | TFS 2018 | TFS 2017 | TFS 2015 | TFS 2013

Your Sprints tools includes a filtered backlog based on an Iteration Path, and a similarly filtered Taskboard. These tools are useful for implementing Scrum practices. With Scrum, you can schedule and plan sprints, update your taskboard, and monitor your sprint burndown.

Scrum methods use Iteration Paths, also referred to as sprints, to plan work to be performed by a team within a specific time period and cadence. To get started, several sprints are predefined for your team. If you're new to Scrum, get an overview from What is Scrum?.

Note

To understand the differences between backlogs, boards, taskboards, and Delivery plans, see Backlogs, boards, and plans. If your backlog or board doesn't show the work items that you expect or want, see Set up your backlogs and boards.

Note

To understand the differences between backlogs, boards, and taskboards, see Backlogs, and boards. If your backlog or board doesn't show the work items that you expect or want, see Set up your backlogs and boards.

Implement Scrum using Azure Boards

The general sequence of steps for implementing Scrum using Azure Boards is as follows:

Configure teams and sprints

  1. Define project-level Iteration Paths and set dates
  2. (Optional) Add project-level Area Paths (Or, add an area path when you configure each team)
  3. Add teams
  4. Select team-level Iteration Paths.

Create team backlog

  1. Create and prioritize your team backlog.
  2. (Optional) Forecast your team backlog.

Implement a sprint

You can quickly assign work items to a sprint by dragging and dropping them from the product backlog to the sprint.

  1. Assign backlog items to a sprint
  2. Add tasks to backlog items
  3. Set sprint capacity
  4. Adjust work to fit sprint capacity
  5. (Optional) Share your sprint plan
  6. Update the Taskboard
  7. Monitor your sprint burndown

Sprint backlogs and taskboards

Sprint backlogs and taskboards provide a filtered view of work items a team has assigned to a specific iteration path, or sprint. Sprints are defined for a project and then selected by teams. From your backlog, you can map work to an iteration path using drag-and-drop, and then view that work in a separate sprint backlog.

Boards>Sprints>Backlog

Boards>backlogs, TFS 2015, 2013 web portal

How selected sprints show up on the backlog

Each sprint that you select for your team provides access to a sprint backlog, taskboard, and other Agile tools for planning and tracking work.

  1. You can gain an overview of your sprint planning by turning the Planning view option on. From the product backlog or any sprint backlog, choose the  view options icon and select Planning.

    Boards>Backlogs>Planning pane

    Note

    The Planning pane will only show the current sprint and the next 10 future sprints in the list, even if more have been selected for the team.

    The set of sprints selected for your team appears. If you don't see any sprints listed, you can add sprints or select existing sprints for your team's use. To learn how, see Define sprints.

  2. To select a sprint backlog, you can choose one of the sprint links from the Planning pane, or from a Sprint backlog, choose a sprint from the sprint selector.

    Boards>Sprints>Sprint selector

For example, by selecting Sprints 1 thru 6, the Fabrikam Fiber team gets access to six sprint backlogs. They also get access to capacity planning tools and a taskboard for each sprint.

Azure Boards and TFS 2017, Selected iterations generate sprint backlogs

For example, by selecting Sprints 1 thru 4, the Fabrikam Fiber team gets access to four sprint backlogs. They also get access to capacity planning tools and a taskboard for each sprint.

TFS 2015 and TFS 2013, Selected iterations generate sprint backlogs

Velocity

When you assign your backlog items to sprints, you'll gain access to an in-context velocity report for both product and portfolio backlogs. Velocity helps teams determine how much work they can perform sprint-over-sprint.

You can quickly configure the Velocity report to count work items or sum Story Points, Effort, Remaining Work or other numeric field.

Open Velocity Analytics

When you assign your product backlog items to sprints, you'll gain access to an in-context velocity report for your product backlog. Velocity helps teams determine how much work they can perform sprint-over-sprint.

The report tracks the team's estimated backlog work—sum of Effort (Basic or Scrum processes), Story Points (Agile process), or Size (CMMI process—that your team has completed (green) in the previous sprints, or that are still in progress (blue).

Web portal, Velocity chart showing seven sprints of in progress and completed work

To learn more, see the following articles:

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