I think this is my first time posting in the community since the pandemic started, I'm looking forward to participating again.
There's some heavy debate in my organization around how to estimate spikes in a sprint: do they get estimated with story points or do they get timeboxed and overall capacity for the team reduced during the sprint? Ultimately it's up to the team and the scrum master to work out how they want to handle it, but my org is in the process of an Agile transformation and wants to establish best practices.
Personally, I've never pointed spikes. Instead I work with the team to understand/confirm capacity based on the number of people, how many points each can take over the course of a sprint, vacations, etc. Once capacity is known I ask the team to set a timebox for working on the spike and if that will reduce that person(s) capacity. (E.g. Two engineers are going to research the spike for 3 days and it is expected to reduce their capacity by 4 points each for the sprint.) I then use that to determine how much work the team can commit to for the sprint.
The other option is, of course, to estimate the spike in story points like any other user story and include it in the team's load for the sprint.
We've been discussing this quite a bit in my org, and for every source of documentation of "best practices" for one method there is documentation for the other.
So what do you do for estimating spikes?
Connect with like-minded Atlassian users at free events near you!Find an event
Connect with like-minded Atlassian users at free events near you!
Unfortunately there are no Community Events near you at the moment.Host an event
You're one step closer to meeting fellow Atlassian users at your local event. Learn more about Community Events