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How to write user stories for usability at release and sprint level

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  • katharina9267
    As an usability manager I have been working on agile projects with user stories for more than a year but only at the sprint /iteration level. I noticed that
    Message 1 of 83 , May 7 12:28 PM
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      As an usability manager I have been working on agile projects with user stories for more than
      a year but only at the sprint /iteration level. I noticed that it is often too late in the process
      to start to try to get usability related acceptance criteria included into sprint level user stories
      once two weekly sprints have started especially if there is not a 'usability' related user story
      at release level or project level to stress the importance of usability and therefore the
      incorporation of a user centred methods such as user testing for instance.
      Every user story is 'a promise for a conversation' and when not included at release level I find
      that the discussion around usability start often too late.
      I have been told that including 'usability' as a non-functional requirement user story could
      be a valid approach at release level and was wondering whether someone else has similar
      experience and how best to tackle 'usability ' related user stories at all project levels
      including acceptance criteria whilst also following the 'invest' approach for good user
      stories.

      Katharina
    • carl myhill
      I m a bit new to Agile but don t really see the problem with this vision thing. I use the Cooper Goal-Directed Design Method. We interview users to learn their
      Message 83 of 83 , Jun 2, 2008
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        I'm a bit new to Agile but don't really see the problem with this
        vision thing. I use the Cooper Goal-Directed Design Method.

        We interview users to learn their goals and understand their tasks and
        we do that up front, perhaps as a sprint rather than anything
        iterative.

        We produce personas, from the interview data, and goals. And we
        produce high level context scenarios, which start making basic
        references to concepts that will exist in the design.

        From the context scenarios we can almost underline the parts which
        indicate user needs.

        Then we take out a whiteboard pen and write a storyboard wireframe
        (which Cooper used to call the Design Vision and now call in
        Interaction Framework). We elaborate a bit on the design hinted at in
        the context scenario and produce a key path scenario, which describes
        in more detail how the user will interact with the design. This whole
        exercise lets us outline the anatomy of the design and to understand
        how to play it.

        When we are happy with that Design Vision, we can jump into iterations
        and do a bit of 'just in time' detailed design.

        The Vision, is the Design Vision. It is justified through
        understanding the users typical day and their typical needs. It
        probably won't change much since it is quite high level.

        I'm not sure where the problem is with a vision like this. perhaps,
        the only drawback is that you have to do a bit of work in front of the
        iterative cycles to get a good understanding of the users and what
        they do to enable you to get this vision pinned down.

        i'd be interested in comments on this.

        Carl
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