Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The Definition of Done - applying Scrum in large Organizations

A.K.A. Static Acceptance Criteria

The Definition of Done (DoD) is a hard pill to swallow for some as it can seem like unnecessary work. I am here to tell you that the Definition of Done is absolutely necessary.

It's your static acceptance criteria - for any given piece of software you are delivering, these criteria must be completed so that the software is deemed "shippable to customers". At a basic level, the DoD can can include:
  • Unit tests
  • Integration tests
  • BDD tests
  • Documentation
  • Product Owner approval

The list can go on for as long as you want it to. When your DoD list is complete you know that you can ship your new software to customers. It's as simple as that.

Do I need a Definition of Done?

No, but without one all of your work will never really be "Done". If you miss documentation for a particular feature, a business stakeholder will eventually want it. If you don't write a test for a chunk of code, someone will eventually tell you that is not acceptable.

So while a DoD is not necessary, it is the same as asking if you ask if quality is necessary for your product. Is a quality product necessary for you?

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