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How do I make progress transparent without disturbing productive plans?

Dorian Daumiller (362) | asked Aug 24 '15, 8:48 a.m.
edited Aug 26 '15, 9:49 a.m.
Using the scrum-Template, I want my work items hierarchy to be as shallow as possible to work with flat lists rather than deep trees of Epics, Stories and Tasks.

On the other hand, I would like to be able to show the current "progress" of top level work packages to my superiors without having to reassemble the information manually in powerpoint slides.

I know how to fulfil either requirement alone:
  1. If I have a flat list plan only consisting of Stories (Execution Items excluded), ranking is possible. But I can't see aggregated status.
  2. If I link all the Stories that contribute to a bigger picture as Children to the higher level Epic, I can see the rolled-up effort and progress in the Epic. But these Epics will clutter the team's plans.

Instinctively, I'd have made the Stories "ContributeTo" the higher level Epics, but the contribution link doesn't propagate Effort and Progress.

How do I resolve that? (Also, as a side question: where can I see which link propagates which information?)

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Geoffrey Clemm (29.5k23035) | answered Aug 28 '15, 11:37 p.m.
The planning views allows you to specify that you want to see the hierarchical structure as a flat list, so if you want to see flat lists of the hierarchical structure, you can do so.   Why are you avoiding the use of hierarchical work item structures?

Dorian Daumiller commented Aug 31 '15, 5:11 a.m.

I don't.
I just don't want to summarize too much on the working level.
In my backlog, I do use the flat view for ranking, but it doesn't show the relation between work items (should it?).
A use case for that:
Epic A is in my backlog, it's been broken down to children Aa and Ab. Those need to be ranked.
Another Epic B is supposed to be handled further down the road and thus doesn't have any children yet. B should be ranked as well. "A" shouldn't.

So, the ideal Backlog would show (ranked):
1. Aa
2. Ab
3. B
"A" is hidden by Exclude Expression:"type:Epic&&children:set".
On the other end, there are top level "packages" those Epics contribute to. Those aren't really relevant for the ranking (much too big). I use them to communicate Progress of the project.
In between, I have a Release Backlog (parent-child-tree) in which I can see progress of the Epics. But those are too many for reporting (hence the Top-Level Items).
If I make the TopLevel Items parents of the medium level WIs, in the Release Backlog I will see the TopLevel items instead (and I can't exclude them).

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