Agile Product Management: Getting Started

Vishwas Trivedi
4 min readDec 4, 2022

Let’s say you and your team wants to do something innovative, like launching a spacecraft. To do so, you’ll need to structure your work; dividing your large targets into small, non-complicated units which can be achieved in minutes. You’ll definitely want to respond to changes, report the team’s progress and stick to a plan. Epics, features, backlogs, tasks, and sub-tasks are the tools that you’ll need.

What are epics, features, backlogs, tasks, and sub-tasks?

  • Epic are large bodies of work that can be broken down into a number of smaller tasks (called features or backlogs). Epics are often considered general use cases that are collections of features (user stories).
  • Features are the business representation of requirements which includes a goal, business function(usage), business value to be generated, priority, etc.
  • Backlogs are “user stories”, which represent a short requirement or request written from the perspective of an end user. A single story should represent only a single user feature. Acceptance criteria for each backlog will be defined before estimation. (Use Fibonacci numbers to estimate.)
  • Tasks are the “dev stories” or “development tasks” that represent a set of “engineering work” that is directly related to a backlog. A single task should not exceed a time limit of 4hrs at maximum.
Task categories

Epic and features are usually called “Portfolio backlogs” which are the highest level in this hierarchy and contain upcoming business goals and should contain a comprehensive set of solutions to meet the goal.

Why? What? and How?

Backlog hierarchy

Use Case

Let’s consider a use case of a user authentication feature.

  • Epic: User Authentication.
  • Feature: Develop a login screen with google and facebook’s single sign-on.
  • Backlogs:
    → User Login screen.
    → Forgot Password workflow.
    → Lock the account after too many failed attempts.
    → Google login support.
    → Facebook login support.

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Vishwas Trivedi

I am an accomplished Software Engineer/ Project Manager with 8.5 years of technical experience in driving successful software development teams.