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Ways to track coding and testing in different sprints

Hi everyone,

I'm new here but thankful I found such a knowledgable group as we move along our Agile journey.

We have a ...well... different situation.  I am aware that what I am about to write is not pure Agile but upper management has determined this is the way we need to track and Jira Align is the tool.  We have an outside vendor doing coding for us this shipping code at the end of the sprint.  Our internal company test teams (multiple groups) then take the code in the next sprint to perform our functional/regression testing.  

The question is how do I track this in Align? 

The prevailing thought is a different user story for the vendor in sprint one.  Sprint two would consist of a user story for each test team.  (wow. that would be a lot of overhead just to set up) 

Is there not a way to have a parent story then the ability to have children for the test teams to test against?  this way the progress for the parent could be tracked in total.   Separate stories just seems like overkill. 

Thanks in advance.  I know this is outside the box so thoughts or guidance is much appreciated. 

Nathan

2 comments

Peter Jessen Community Leader Apr 19, 2020

Hi @Nathan Harrison,

You are certainly correct that this is not agile. :-)

As I am sure you are aware, there is no such thing as a parent story having children stories in agile; therefore, there is no such thing in Jira Align either.

Question: How are you tracking the external vendor code? Are they in your Jira instance? It sounds like this might be the case from your comment "The prevailing thought is a different user story for the vendor in sprint one."

If your vendor stories aren't in Jira (and also in Jira Align), then:

  • I recommend you use External Dependencies to track the delivery of the external supplier code to your teams.
  • The dependency would be from your test teams through the feature the code is meant to enable
  • Your teams would then simply have (very non-agile) test-only stories in sprint 2 tied to the same feature.

If your vendor stories (and the vendor) are in Jira (and also in Jira Align), then:

  • I recommend you use a regular Team Dependency to track the delivery of the  supplier code to your teams.
  • The dependency would be from your test teams through the feature the code is meant to enable.
  • The vendor team (in Jira/JA) would be the dependent upon team and would link its stories to the dependency.
  • Your teams would then:
    • simply have (very non-agile) test-only stories in sprint 2 tied to the same feature OR
  • You could enable the post-Product Owner Story Acceptance states of In Delivery and Delivered functionality in your JA instance.
    • This provides the ability to track additional testing of stories and features past normal Product Owner Acceptance. These states DO NOT currently sync with any related Jira states at this time.
    • You could also enable a story-level developmental value stream to provide process step tracking functionality. The team testing post-vendor delivery can be mapped to the In Delivery and Delivered states.
    • You will need to speak with your Jira Align Administrator or your Jira Align integrator to enable this advanced functionality.

Feel free to reach out to me if you have any additional questions.

Regards,
Peter

Thanks @Peter Jessen .  I am soaking in what you wrote plus i have a PI Planning going on.  I am sure i will have follow up questions.  Just might take a couple of days to get them back. 

Yes, our vendor does have access to our JIRA and it is a single instance everyone is using. 

Thanks!

Nathan

Hey @Nathan Harrison

(Putting aside all the agile problems with this :D we all get saddled with these ones sometimes...)

Are you able to manage this in a single integrated Jira instance primarily? Working there you'd either have the option to:

- have Dev and Test sub-tasks under a Story (this gives rise to other problems because only Stories can be planned into sprints, but worth exploring the mechanics of)

- have a split workflow where Stories go through the 'dev' set of statuses in one scrum board, and the flow onto a 'test' set of statuses in another before (finally!) making it to "Done"

 

You could choose how you then want to reflect this in anything like Jira Align that sits on top - personally because nothing of value gets delivered until it goes through both sets I'd treat each pair of boards as one super-team that you track true velocity over. 

Thanks @Kit Friend .  I am soaking in what you wrote plus i have a PI Planning going on.  I am sure i will have follow up questions.  Just might take a couple of days to get them back. There is one shared JIRA instance. 

Thanks,

Nathan

@Nathan Harrison-

FYI. The option @Kit Friend is providing will NOT work when Jira is integrated with Jira Align. You can't have one story on two scrum boards, nor can you have split workflows. This will work in a Jira-only situation, but not a Jira integrated with Jira Align configuration.

Enjoy PI Planning.

Regards,
Peter

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