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The Math Behind the Jira Align Program Increment Progress and Scope Reports

If you have ever wondered how these Jira Align graphs and numbers are calculated, wonder no more!

 

Program Increment Progress Report:

This report consists of four burnup and burndown graphs, two are based on features and the other two based on stories. This page looks like this:

PIP Report.png

Let’s look at each graph individually:

 

Burndown by Feature

 

burndown by feature.png

 

NOTE: Scope added or removed does not adjust the scope line in the burndown as it does in the burnup. Instead, the starting point of the scope line dynamically adjusts to always start with whatever the current points are in the PI. Think of the scope line as the ideal burn of story points based on the currently assigned points as of today.

This report goes off of Feature Acceptance dates and totals just the Accepted Stories under the Feature. In my small program, my PI has the following accepted features, by date:

Feature Accepted Date

Sum of ALL Story Points on Feature

Sum of Accepted Story Points on Feature

2020-07-07

17

11

2020-07-14

8

8

2020-07-23

2

2

2020-08-20

21

11

Comparing this data to the burndown chart, the accepted stories column matches each drop by date and number of points. Also, note the gray dashed line that indicates when the PI will end. Based on current velocity, in my example Jira Align is predicting that the work will not be finished within this PI.

 

Burnup by Feature 

burnup by feature.png

NOTE: The Burnup DOES move the scope line if you add scope, while the burndown does NOT show added scope. In the above chart, a large amount of scope was added between August 23rd and September 6th.

This report, like the burndown, looks at Feature Accepted dates, so looking at the same table as previous, I have these acceptance dates for my features:

Feature Accepted Date

Sum of ALL Story Points on Feature

Sum of Accepted Story Points on Feature

2020-07-07

17

11

2020-07-14

8

8

2020-07-23

2

2

2020-08-20

21

11

This graph also matches the data when totaling all Accepted Stories under the Accepted Features.

 

Burndown by Story

burndown by story.png

 

NOTE: Scope added or removed does not adjust the scope line in the burndown as it does in the burnup. Instead, the starting point of the scope line dynamically adjusts to always start with whatever the current points are in the PI. Think of the scope line as the ideal burn of story points based on the currently assigned points as of today.

This graph is focused on Stories, so it is adding up all Accepted Stories in this Program Increment and/or a Sprint in this PI. Unlike the Feature burndown, this graph includes orphan stories {Stories assigned to a sprint in this PI or just the PI.} So to calculate this report, look at all Accepted Stories by Accepted Date:

Story Accepted Date

Story Point Total

2020-06-23

3

2020-07-01

8

2020-07-24

2

2020-08-04

2

2020-08-05

2

2020-08-15

4

Burnup by Story

burnup by story.png

 

NOTE: The Burnup DOES move the scope line if you add scope, while the Burndown does NOT show added scope.

So, let’s take the Story data we already have from the previous example, a table of Story Accepted dates - being sure to count all stories in the Sprint and/or the PI:

Story Accepted Date

Story Point Total

2020-06-23

3

2020-07-01

8

2020-07-24

2

2020-08-04

2

2020-08-05

2

2020-08-15

4

This shows the data behind the chart - all stories, including orphans, completed by this program on a date within the PI Boundaries.

Program Increment Scope Report:

Have you ever looked at the Jira Align Program Increment Scope report and noticed that the total of the Points column may not be equal to the “All Starting Points” field at the top? Below is an example:

Scope Change Report.png

There are a few reasons why this might be the case:

If the Points column total is higher than the “All Starting Points” field at the top

The Points column is the sum total of all Story Points under your Features. This may include stories that are assigned to a different PI. If your report is showing a higher value in the Points column than the “All Starting Points” field at the top, as in this case, this is most likely why.

If the “All Starting Points” field at the top is higher than the Points column total

This can happen if you have orphan stories. Since the Points column only includes story points associated with features, it will not count any orphan stories that may be assigned to either the PI, one of your sprints, or both.

6 comments

Mark Cruth Atlassian Team Aug 24, 2020

Fantastic article, Peggy!

Like Corey King likes this
Corey King Atlassian Team Sep 10, 2020

Very nice work, and very much appreciated, Peggy! 

Rae Gibbs Atlassian Team Sep 30, 2020

@Peggy Graham Way to go, Peggy!  Great article and breakdown!

Great work, very helpful!

I still don't understand how the prediction gets calculated.  
If I see the below history, I don't trust the prediction...

Screenshot 2022-04-14 120325.png

Peggy Graham Atlassian Team Apr 15, 2022

@oliviercosta - Hello!  This article goes over the Program Increment Burnup/Burndown by Story and by Feature, from your screen shot, you're looking at the burnup by Epic.  I actually didn't realize that Jira Align did that, so thank you, today I learned!

Since this article doesn't apply to the math by epics, the best bet is to open a support ticket so they can help.  :-)

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