Iteration Demo and Review Meetings

Agile teams embrace the notion of inspect-and-adapt as a means to continually build learning and improvement in how they work. Running an effective iteration demonstration and review meeting is the foundation of this principle.

At the end of an iteration, the entire team meets to reflect on the iteration. Attendees include:

  • Scrum master (meeting facilitator)
  • Product owner
  • Developers
  • Testers
  • Any other contributors or interested stakeholders

The goal of the meeting is to create visibility around what occurred in the course of the iteration and to amplify learning about what could then be planned for the next iteration. The delivery team presents the done items in a demonstration. Done items are all items that have been accepted by the product owner. The demonstration invites clarification, reflection, and celebration with regard to the team's commitment.

The meeting also invites inspection of the metrics that show what occurred in accepting (or not accepting) items. The attendees evaluate:

  • Items were not completed
  • Risks encountered
  • Items more complex than originally planned
  • Tests run, passed, or failed
  • Defects logged
  • Other measurements the team tracked

The product owner and stakeholders use this meeting to evaluate the product and release backlog priorities:

  • Has one item been too costly to complete given its estimated value? Should like items be re-evaluated?
  • Is another item now not worth working on at all?
  • Should priorities shift higher for some items in the release backlog based this findings in this meeting?
  • Should we re-allocate team resources based on the done items and metrics?
  • Are there new items we need to add to the backlog?
  • Should the team stop work entirely on the product based on what we have just learned?

At the end of a good meeting, all attendees have a clear understanding of the completed iteration as well as a good sense of the value that was delivered. With this information, the product owner continues work on value definition in the form of backlog priorities and details. The team continues its work by taking the learning and applying it to the next iteration planning meeting. The scrum master collects action items and ensures each has an owner. The scrum master then takes on the ownership of ensuring each action item is completed.


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