From “Acceptance Test” to “User Story,” our agile glossary contains several frequently-used agile terms and definitions to be familiar with as a product manager.
In agile methodologies, acceptance criteria refers to a set of predefined requirements that must be met in order to mark a user story complete. Acceptance criteria are also sometimes called the “definition of done."
In software development, an acceptance test refers to the process of testing a new system, feature, or functionality against predefined acceptance criteria.
Adaptive Software Development (ASD)
Adaptive Software Development (ASD) is a direct outgrowth of an earlier agile framework, Rapid Application Development (RAD). It aims to enable teams to quickly and effectively adapt to changing requirements or market needs.
Agile is an iterative product-development methodology in which teams work in brief, incremental “sprints,” and then regroup frequently to review the work and make changes.
An agile framework is one of many documented software-development approaches based on the agile philosophy articulated in the Agile Manifesto.
The Agile Manifesto is a brief document built on 4 values and 12 principles for agile software development. The Agile Manifesto was published in February 2001.
There are 12 agile principles outlined in The Agile Manifesto in addition to the 4 agile values. These 12 principles for agile software development help establish the tenets of the agile mindset.
Agile transformation is the process of transitioning an entire organization to a nimble, reactive approach based on agile principles. Understanding agile transformation begins with understanding what it is not: adopting agile software development methodologies.
A backlog is a list of task-level details required to execute on a larger strategic plan. A quick glance at a prioritized backlog conveys the next items on a project's to-do list.
Backlog grooming, also referred to as backlog refinement or story time, is a recurring event for agile product development teams. The primary purpose of a backlog grooming session is to ensure the next few sprints worth of user stories in the backlog are prepared for sprint planning. Regular backlog grooming sessions also help ensure the right stories are prioritized and that the product backlog does not become a black hole.
A burndown chart is a visual display of work completed and remaining in a project, sprint, or iteration. In most cases the x-axis of the chart represents time, while the y-axis represents work either completed or remaining.
What is Business Agility? Business agility applies the principles of agile development to the entire organization. This allows companies to...
In software product development, continuous delivery (CD) is the successful execution of continuous deployment. Whereas continuous deployment aims to reduce...
In software product development, continuous deployment refers to a strategy that aims to reduce the amount of time between writing code and pushing it live. Common practices under this agile-inspired strategy may include automated testing and automated releases.
Continuous integration or CI, refers to an engineering practice that is said to help automate certain pieces of work and identify bugs early in the process. Engineers practicing continuous integration merge their code to a shared repository several times each day. That code is then passed through several automated tests to help identify any errors.
A cross-functional team refers to a group which contains expertise or representation from various "functional" departments. For example, an agile cross-functional team may consist of a product manager, product owner, scrum master, engineers, QA, and design.
A DEEP Backlog is one of the suggested objectives of a product backlog grooming session. DEEP is an acronym used to indicate a few key traits of an effective product backlog.
Definition of Done
In the Scrum agile framework, Definition of Done describes the requirements that must be met in order for a story to be considered complete. This concept differs from acceptance criteria in that it is a wide-ranging set of requirements that can apply to all items in the backlog (i.e. quality).
Definition of Ready
In the Scrum agile framework, Definition of Ready describes the requirements that must be met in order for a story to move from the backlog to development. In keeping with agile tradition, Ready is often defined as a story that can be acted on immediately.
Disciplined Agile (DA)
What is Disciplined Agile? Disciplined Agile (DA), is a process decision framework that puts individuals first and offers only lightweight...
Dual-track agile is a type of agile development in which the cross-functional product team breaks its daily development work into two tracks: discovery and delivery.The discovery track focuses on quickly generating validated product ideas for the backlog, and the delivery track focuses on turning those ideas into software ready for the market.
What is the Eisenhower Matrix? The Eisenhower Matrix is a productivity, prioritization, and time-management framework designed to help you prioritize...
The engineering backlog lists and prioritizes the stories, epics, and/or initiatives that are to be worked on by the engineering team for a given sprint. Typical items in an engineering backlog include stories, bug fixes, and other engineering-related tasks.
Enterprise Architecture Planning
What is Enterprise Architecture? Enterprise architecture is a strategic and comprehensive blueprint for how IT infrastructure will be used across...
Enterprise Architecture Roadmap
What is an Enterprise Architecture Roadmap? An enterprise architecture roadmap is a strategic blueprint that communicates how a company’s IT...
An epic, like a theme, is typically a group of features or stories with a common strategic goal. Note that an epic is one level of detail below a theme, considering a theme might be comprised of several related epics.
Feature Driven Development (FDD)
What is Feature Driven Development? (FDD) Feature Driven Development (FDD) is an agile framework that, as its name suggests, organizes...
Lean Software Development
What is Lean Software Development (LSD)? Lean Software Development (LSD) is an agile framework based on optimizing development time and...
Pair programming is an agile software development practice in which two programmers team up at one workstation to maximize efficiency. With pair programming, one of the two programmers (the driver) writes the code while the other watches and reviews (the observer). The two programmers switch roles frequently.
Planning poker (also called Scrum poker) helps agile teams estimate the time and effort needed to complete each initiative on their product backlog.
What is the Product Backlog? Definition: A product backlog lists and prioritizes the task-level details required to execute on the...
Product Development Process
What Is the Product Development Process? The product development process encompasses all steps needed to take a product from concept...
The product owner bridges the gap between product strategy and development. They are usually responsible for the product backlog, organizing sprints, and are expected to be available to answer questions from developers as needed. In comparison to the strategy-focused role of the product manager, the product owner generally takes on more tactical duties.
Rapid Application Development (RAD)
What is Rapid Application Development (RAD)? Rapid Application Development is an agile framework focused primarily on rapid prototyping of software...
Rapid experimentation is an agile approach to the product development process. With this approach, frequent experiments are deployed in an attempt to discover new, innovative ideas. Experiments can range in severity, from simple A/B tests to larger field experiments.
Rapid prototyping is an agile strategy used throughout the product development process. With this approach, 3-dimensional prototypes of a product or feature are created and tested in an attempt to optimize characteristics like shape, size, and overall usability.
What is a Release Demo? Definition: A release demo is typically given by agile teams at the end of a...
Scaled Agile Framework
What is the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe)? The Scaled Agile Framework, or SAFe, methodology is an agile framework for development...
Scrum Agile Framework
What is Scrum Agile Framework? In an agile context, Scrum is an approach to project management. Typically the Scrum agile...
A scrum master is a facilitator for an agile team working under the scrum methodology. The scrum master serves as a point person responsible for understanding the big development picture of each sprint.
What is a Scrum Meeting? Scrum meeting is a catch-all term for the various different meetings practiced by agile scrum...
Shape Up Method
What is the Shape Up Method? The Shape Up Method describes the specific processes used by product development teams to...
What is an Agile Sprint? In agile methodology, a sprint is a period (e.g., 14 days) in which an agreed-upon...
What is a Sprint Backlog? A sprint backlog is the set of items that a cross-functional product team selects from...
What is a Sprint Goal? In the scrum methodology for agile, sprint goals are clear objectives set before the beginning...
What is Sprint Planning? In the Scrum agile framework, a sprint planning meeting is an event that establishes the product...
What is a Standup? A daily standup is a quick session where each member of the team shares what they...
A user story is a small, self-contained unit of development work designed to accomplish a specific goal within a product. A user story is usually written from the user’s perspective and follows the format: “As [a user persona], I want [to perform this action] so that [I can accomplish this goal].”