With an objective to enable continuous learning and progression for our learners, PremierAgile curated several learning articles in the areas of Agile, Scrum, Product Ownership, Scaling, Agile Leadership, Tools & Frameworks, latest market trends, new innovations etc...
We all plan to finish things on time, but sometimes we struggle to find the motivation. That's where burndown charts come in. In our fast-paced world, teams need to finish their work quickly. These charts help make sure a team stays productive throughout the whole project.
In Agile or Scrum, a burndown chart shows how much work is finished by tracking the project completion rate. It showcases your team’s current progress and predicts how it will do in the future. So, let's understand what a burndown chart is in-depth and how to use it.
A burndown chart is like a graph that shows how much work a team has finished on a project task. It's easy to understand because of its visual format. This chart summarizes a project feature from the viewpoint of the people who will use it. That's why you only update the chart after you finish a project part.
This chart generally has two axes – one vertical Y-axis and another horizontal X-axis. The Y-axis or the vertical line shows the work that needs to be done by your team. The X-axis or the horizontal line shows the time available in the sprint. The project starts from the far left, and on the far right is where it ends.
The burndown chart is shared with everyone involved in the project. It helps everyone understand how much progress the team has made. The chart is updated regularly to keep everyone informed and prevent obstacles from slowing down.
Sprint Burndown Chart: This type of burndown chart shows the progress of tasks within ongoing sprints. It overviews how much work has been completed and how much is left to do in the current sprint. The chart displays User Stories that the team has chosen for the sprint during the Sprint Planning session.
Product Burndown Chart: The product burndown chart provides a broader project view. It focuses on the overall progress toward meeting the project's goals. The vertical axis of this chart represents the Product Backlog Items, which are the tasks that need to be completed. The horizontal axis indicates the sprint numbers, showing the progression over time.
Release Burndown Chart: This type tracks progress during an iteration or product development. The vertical axis typically represents the hours or story points, which are units of work. The horizontal axis represents the time spent. This chart helps the team keep track of their progress and see how much work they have completed within a specific timeframe.
Understanding how to read a burndown chart is crucial, especially for managers. This skill helps you monitor your team's progress and enhance their efficiency. Here's a step-by-step guide to reading a burndown chart:
The chart will show different scenarios depending on how your team is performing. The chart will look perfect if the team is well-organized and finishes the project on time. This indicates that no adjustments are needed. In another situation, the chart will show a decent scenario if your Agile Team starts slowly but manages to finish the sprint on time. In this case, the team can make a few changes during sprint meetings to ensure they complete tasks on schedule.
For a Project Manager, a burndown chart is like a valuable map that helps plan and track tasks. It's great for figuring out when all the work will be finished, which is important for planning.
Here's how it helps with different things:
Burndown charts are highly useful tools for your Scrum Team. They're great for keeping track of how your team is doing with their work. Whether trying to improve your project or keep your clients informed, burndown charts can be helpful.
Nowadays, almost every company is using burndown charts effectively in their projects. If your organization hasn't tried using a burndown chart for your work or projects, it's a good idea to try it now!