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Definition of Done

If a team does not define what “done” means, how can they know when they are truly finished? Done is more than just user story acceptance criteria; it can include anything a team believes necessary to call the product complete. It may not be done until it reaches production. Or, it could be done once testing is complete on the integration server. The definition of done may vary from project to project or even sprint to sprint. The important part is that everyone involved, including the Product Owner and other stakeholders, understands accepts, and adheres to the agreed upon definition of done.

Defining the Team’s “Done”

  • Agree upfront on the definition of done
  • Involve entire team in definition
  • Examples include:
    • Finished writing code
    • Unit tests all run successfully
    • Code is commented
    • Code is peer-reviewed
    • User has approved the feature (passed user acceptance testing)
    • No issues remain open in tracking system
    • Release notes have been updated
    • Training manuals have been updated
  • Frequently revisit and refine “done”

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