Category: TFS

  • What’s our Sprint Goal?

    What’s our Sprint Goal?

    According to the Scrum Guide, the Sprint Goal is an objective set for the Sprint that can be met through the implementation of Product Backlog. It provides guidance to the Development Team on why it is building the Increment. As the Development Team works, it keeps the Sprint Goal in mind. Unfortunately, there is no first class…

  • Which tests are my regression tests?

    Which tests are my regression tests?

    Although we can’t help you decide which tests should be part of your regression suite, we can help you easily identify them by using tags. Over the years, we’ve seen teams using Team Foundation Server and Visual Studio Team Services to create a separate static test suite or even a test plan. Those approaches are way…

  • Wassup Team Room?

    Wassup Team Room?

    According to Microsoft’s official definition, Team Rooms, like chat rooms, “provide teams with a space to discuss work in progress, ask questions, share status, and clarify issues that arise.” Sounds great, but I find that most teams I train, coach, and consult are using other products for this type of collaboration. Add to that a…

  • Ordering the Product Backlog by ROI

    Ordering the Product Backlog by ROI

    The Scrum Guide says that the Product Owner is the sole person responsible for managing the Product Backlog and that Product Backlog management includes ordering items in the Product Backlog “to best achieve goals and missions”. One of the best ways to do that is to order based on the principle of Return on Investment…

  • Stakeholder Traceroute

    I’m always amazed at how difficult and even impossible it can be for stakeholders to get their ideas into some product backlogs. I’ve started asking teams to run a stakeholder traceroute. In other words, walk me through the process that a user might go through in order to get a good idea (not necessarily a…

  • Storyboard your ideas for free

    Storyboard your ideas for free

    Update (April 2016): Microsoft has released Office Integration 2015 Update 2. With the recent release of Team Foundation Server Update 1, Microsoft has enabled all users to create storyboards in PowerPoint for free. This means that even stakeholders (VSTS/TFS users that don’t need a license) can now also create storyboards in PowerPoint without a Visual Studio…

  • Microsoft, please give us a Scrum process template

    Microsoft, please give us a Scrum process template

    In 2014, the Scrum Guide was moved off of Scrum.org and posted to ScrumGuides.org. At the same time, all of the major Scrum organizations in the world acknowledged this as the official definition of Scrum. Unfortunately, Microsoft still hasn’t received the memo. Sure, they have a Scrum process template and it was quite good (back in…

  • Dude, where's my releases?

    Dude, where's my releases?

    You may have noticed when creating a new Scrum team project in Visual Studio Online or Team Foundation Server 2015, that the iteration list looks a bit different. Yes, Microsoft flattened out the list of iterations, listing only sprints and no more releases: Previously, new team projects created using the Scrum process template would have…

  • Use Excel to Create Repetitive Work Items

    Use Excel to Create Repetitive Work Items

    Teams often ask me for any shortcuts to periodically creating the same work items, such as for each sprint or release. In other words, they want to create the same Product Backlog Item or Task (but hopefully not Bugs) over and over. My first suggestion is to use work item templates in TWA or TFPT…

  • Promoting a PBI to a Feature (Epic)

    Promoting a PBI to a Feature (Epic)

    For Scrum Teams using TFS 2013 to create and manage their Product Backlog, they may want to take advantage of the new Agile Portfolio. This “higher level” backlog allows a team or organization to plan and track initiatives, features, epics, etc. The term “Feature” is the default, but with on-premises TFS, you can customize this.…