A product backlog is a list of new features, ideas, updates to existing features, and fixes or changes that are archived in a specific order for later development on a product.
What is a Product Backlog?
The product backlog is a key element in workflow organization and prioritization, it’s a prioritized list of features or tasks that need to be implemented in the product production process. The backlog houses a list of tasks and projects that are on the radar, yet won’t be completed in the current sprint. Having an organized workflow is important to production schedules and planning as it helps to organize all the things that need to get done yet aren’t in imminent need. In the product development lifecycle it helps to have a backlog of tasks and projects that can be worked on once the more important tasks have been completed.
Tasks in the backlog can come from a variety of sources whether they are bug fixes to a project, marketing needs, or new features that need to be added. They all fall under the backlog prioritization lists. The different sources can determine the level of importance for the task such as a bug fix that comes from user feedback will have a higher priority on the backlog versus making a style change. These tasks can be added by suggestion or the product owner and by the project manager based on needs and sprint cycles. The project manager is also the one who decides what order the tasks are on the backlog and assigns them each sprint cycle to be completed.
How does the product backlog help the agile development cycle?
In agile development, plans may change as the product develops, having a product backlog of tasks that need to be completed helps the development team know what to focus on next or what to hold off on. The backlog is an organizational tool for agile development because it can be reorganized and reevaluated as the project progresses and needs change.
Why Product Backlog?
A product backlog helps to organize tasks in a prioritized list for future reference and sprint planning. Keeping a list of these future features and tasks allows the product owner and development team to do things in a different order that allows for certain features to be completed based on needs and wants.