Backlog Size

Does your product backlog look like an ideas collector?


According to the Scrum Guide: “The Product Backlog is an ordered list of everything that is known to be needed in the product. It is the single source of requirements for any changes to be made to the product.”

Product Backlog consists of Product Backlog Items (PBI). The format of the items is for you (the organization or the team) to agree on how to classify them. Teams are using different approaches - from having only a handful of PBI types, like Bug, Task, Test, or a comprehensive set of them.

Whichever approach works best for you, it is a sign of poor Product Backlog maintenance if the number of PBIs grows out of acceptable boundaries or, in rare cases, if the number is too low for the team(s) to consume them.


Are you having difficulties organizing the Product Backlog? Do you want to expose the problem that too many people are trashing the list, making it unmanageable? Managing backlog becomes inefficient if there are too many PBIs, often duplicates, or just serving as a wish list.

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