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.
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?
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.
→ User Login screen.
→ Forgot Password workflow.
→ Lock the account after too many failed attempts.
→ Google login support.
→ Facebook login support.