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39449Re: Scrum Teams Finishing Most Work in Last Third of Sprint: PROBLEM or NO??

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  • redbull1214
    Jun 30, 2009
      At the stand-ups, the number of user stories in the "In Progress" category varies, so it is hard for me to give a uniform answer. However, I will say that team members will usually take on 1-2 tasks at a time.

      But, 66% of the time, the burndown would look something like this for my teams:

      1. In the first 2/3 of the sprint, about 25-35% of total work is completed (satisfying "definition of done")

      2. In the last 1/3 of the sprint, about ~60% of total work is completed

      3. At the close of the sprint, most teams will end up completing 82-87% of TOTAL STORY POINT COMMITMENTS.

      I notice this trend with the teams I have and am wondering if other scrum masters have noticed the same results..


      James

      --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com, Luiz Cláudio Parzianello <parzianello@...> wrote:
      >
      > If you think your iteration is a small waterfall cycle, you don´t have to be
      > alarmed ...
      > If you would like to have your team performing a JIT production, you have to
      > be alarmed ...
      > How many User Stories (%) you usually get in a "standby" situation when they
      > are "in progress" in your kanban?
      >
      >
      > 2009/6/30 redbull1214 <james_k_lee@...>
      >
      > >
      > >
      > > Thanks for the concern, Jack.
      > >
      > > I'd like to add more context to this conversation.
      > >
      > > So, the teams take on about 30-40 tasks per sprint. Approximately, 82-87%
      > > of those 30-40 tasks are completed (broken down into story points). Usually,
      > > this amounts to 2-4 tasks not completed.
      > >
      > > The only concern I am presenting is this observation:
      > >
      > > ..that the teams tend to finish the majority (~60%) of their commitments in
      > > the last third of the sprint.
      > >
      > > Should I be alarmed by this observation? And, if so, WHY? And, what
      > > mechanisms would I have at my disposal from a facilitator standpoint?
      > >
      > > Thanks.
      > >
      > > James
      > >
      > > PS We use the Kanban board. Burndown charts are posted daily.
      > >
      > >
      > > --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com<scrumdevelopment%40yahoogroups.com>,
      > > "jmilunsky" <jack@> wrote:
      > > >
      > > > if you are using the kanban board and they're not finishing tasks, this
      > > would mean that tasks are piling up in the in progress column which you'd
      > > see straight away.
      > > >
      > > > so you should ensure the tasks are complete before they start a new task,
      > > there's ways to limit the number of tasks in any given column.
      > > >
      > > > You may however have a problem where they say the task is finished but
      > > it's not really. This is a different problem altogether. I suggest you get
      > > qa engaged earlier if this is the case so that you can know sooner that the
      > > task is actually not done.
      > > >
      > > > Try adding acceptance test criteria and make the developers ensure that
      > > there stuff is done
      > > >
      > > > Jack
      > > > www.agilebuddy.com
      > > > blog.agilebuddy.com
      > > > twitter.com/agilebuddy
      > > >
      > > > --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com<scrumdevelopment%40yahoogroups.com>,
      > > "redbull1214" <james_k_lee@> wrote:
      > > > >
      > > > > I am already using the Kanban Board, since sprint 1.
      > > > >
      > > > > James
      > > > >
      > > > > --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com<scrumdevelopment%40yahoogroups.com>,
      > > "jmilunsky" <jack@> wrote:
      > > > > >
      > > > > > THis is called thrashing i.e. they're not finishing one thing before
      > > starting another.
      > > > > >
      > > > > > A kanban board should really help you with this
      > > > > >
      > > > > > Jack
      > > > > > blog.agilebuddy.com
      > > > > > twitter.com/agilebuddy
      > > > > > www.agilebuddy.com
      > > > > >
      > > > > > --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com<scrumdevelopment%40yahoogroups.com>,
      > > "redbull1214" <james_k_lee@> wrote:
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > Hi Everyone,
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > I am facilitating 3 scrum teams (4 at one point in time before I
      > > consolidated 2 into 1).
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > I've noticed that most of the teams here have a propensity to
      > > finish "most" of their tasks (like 60%) in the last third of the sprint.
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > After more than 7+ sprints for each team, they are averaging 82-87%
      > > completion % overall.. The teams are on an upward trend in terms of story
      > > points completed (maybe 5-10% growth per iteration) and scoring/ estimates
      > > are becoming more standardized (that is, team members more readily agree on
      > > each other's estimates with LESS conversation during the planning
      > > meeting),..
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > From a facilitator perspective, should I be alarmed about this?
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > If so, what are some of the mechanisms you like to use to keep the
      > > burndown on a more even pace throughout the sprint cycle??
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > Please advise.
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > James ;)
      > > > > > >
      > > > > >
      > > > >
      > > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      >
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