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Definition of Done

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What is the definition of done in the scrum agile framework?


Definition of done (DoD)

In reference to the scrum agile framework, the definition of done (DoD) describes predefined demands a certain output must meet when being delivered. It is used to establish a common understanding of the product’s level of integrity to ensure quality. The nature of assignments typically varies and so may their requirements that need to be considered to conform to the DoD.

In scrum agile framework it is common to use descriptives such as epic, story, and feature to identify the character and the acceptance criteria of a task. Successfully performed definition of done (DoD) will facilitate a greater velocity of the delivery team.

The definition of done (DoD) is a solid and predefined set of requirements that need to be met in order for any output to be signed off as delivered. 

Given the ever-changing nature of the agile methodology, it can be tough to understand what is meant by the definition of done in agile.

We use DoD to establish a common understanding of the product’s level of integrity to ensure quality and value is baked into it. It’s essentially a checklist that teams follow to help the product development process run smoothly while consistently producing high-quality products.

What is a definition of done example?

The definition of done is laid out like a checklist so teams can quickly and easily identify when a task has been completed. This also helps product managers to keep track of the project’s progress. 

For a generic software project, the definition of done will look something like this:

  • Tests written and passing

  • Continuous integration build passing

  • Security vulnerability scan passing

  • Cross-browser testing done on current top 5 browsers according to analytics

  • Mobile testing done on current top 3 mobile devices according to analytics

  • Google accessibility check passed

  • Code peer-reviewed

  • Documentation updated

  • Acceptance criteria met

For a feature that will be part of the final product, a generic definition of done will look like this:

  • Acceptance criteria met

  • Integrated into a clean build

  • Promoted to higher level environment

  • Automated regression tests pass

  • Feature level functional tests passed

  • Non-Functional requirements met

  • Meets compliance requirements

  • Functionality documented in the necessary user documentation

For epics in agile, the DoD will look like this:

  • Non-functional requirements met

  • End-to-end integration completed

  • Regression tests pass

  • Promoted to production environment

  • Meets defined market expectations

It’s important to note that these are just generic examples. Your definition of done should be discussed as a team and will look different depending on how your team operates. The key is that tasks are clearly laid out and logged to help track overall project progress.

What is definition of done in a user story?

One of the most common areas where you’ll use a definition of done is when shipping a user story

For a user story to be deemed “done”, you need to check off several items:

  • Unit test passed

  • Code reviewed

  • Acceptance criteria for each issue met

  • Functional tests passed

  • Non-functional requirements met

  • Product owner accepts the User Story

Only once all of these criteria are met will the user story meet the definition of done. However, the definition of done in user stories works a little differently. Each issue needs its own acceptance criteria that must be completed before it can be checked off the definition of done list. 

Acceptance criteria are a set of targets that must be met to finalize and complete a user story. This is similar to DoD, but acceptance criteria are unique to the user story, feature, or issue.

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What Is the Definition of Done In the Scrum Agile Framework

General FAQ

When is it most appropriate for a development team to change the definition of done?
The definition of done can be changed by the development team during the sprint retrospective.
Who defines the definition of done?
The scrum team is in charge of determining what is the definition of done. In most cases, it’s a collaboration of the product owner and the development team. In some cases, the scrum master may need to enforce the development team to ensure quality is maintained.

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