Taming the Beast: How to Rank Large Backlogs

Recently, I spoke with a product owner who was struggling to rank his backlog of a few thousand stories.  Although he may have some opportunities to simplify the backlog and rank higher level epics, sometimes you have to play the hand you’re dealt.  Fortunately, VersionOne supports ranking large backlogs of all types.

I put stories related to a particular customer in a project for that customer.  When business priorities change, I need to update the overall backlog, which contains all the different customer backlogs, so the work for the different customers is sequenced correctly.  Drag and drop doesn’t work well in this scenario because each customer has more than a few stories.  Neither does using multi-select and moving all of the work to the top over the overall backlog.  For example, the customer in fourth position needs to be moved to the second position, so their hundred or so stories need to get moved above the (currently) second customer’s stories.  Help me!

Watch this video to learn how to Rank Large Backlogs (if you are struggling to rank a large backlog, then check out the story below and my video answer (you’ll need to turn the volume way up – sorry about that).

Watch the video above to see how to tame the beast with filtering and the multi-select ranking Move to Page action.  The general steps are:

  1. Move the top story for the group of stories to the location that you’d like it in the backlog.
  2. Filter the backlog so it only shows the group of stories that you’d like to move.
  3. Select all items and use Multi-Select Ranking > Top of List to bunch the item together.
This entry was posted in Product & Release Planning, Product Owner, Product Tips & Tricks, ScrumMaster, Sprint Planning & Tracking, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

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