After preparing as best as we could our Sprint Planning to keep it short and efficient, let’s see now how we can get a realistic Team
capacity for the Sprint.
Disclaimer: These articles are very personal so feel free to disagree. I am hoping to provide a interesting feedback to help you make your own decisions.
Sprint Capacity preparation
To calculate the
Azure Boards will mainly try to count the number of
Working days in a Sprint, and will multiply it by the
daily capacity in
Hours of the
So let’s first see how to configure the
Working days of a Sprint.
Configure the Sprint Working days
First of all, you have to set the Team Working Days if not already done. (Note that by default only
Sunday are not considered as working days).
Then obviously, we need to set the Sprint Dates
Finally, we need to make sure that all Team members are defined in the Sprint capacity, and then define the
Team days off (if any).
From there you can already check the calculated Sprint working days
If possible, don’t forget also to specify individual team members days off (also if any of course).
Alright, so far we manipulated
days, but most of
Azure Boards features are expressed in
hours, so let’s see how to convert these
Personal feedback: Use 1 day = 6 hours to convert your estimates
Azure DevOps only use hours for estimates, we use
6 hours when we want to describe an estimate of a
full day task and
3 hours for a
half a day task.
1 day corresponding to
6 hours is a completely arbitrary value and was chosen as the most fitting value for us, because it enables us to still get meaningful estimates while not
micro tracking every unplanned events (pair programming, review, questions, discussions etc. etc.)
Define Sprint global capacity and capacity by activity and member
Given the estimates scale described before, let’s first configure the Team members capacity, specifying a capacity of
6 hours (for a full day of work) per team member.
With this, you should be able to see the
Sprint global capacity as well as the individual
member capacity from selecting
Work details in the
In the picture above, the
Team overall capacity is
600 hours (meaning 10 people in the team for a 10 days Sprint), and
12 hours of
Remaining Work are already defined in the Sprint.
For the Team member
Vivien, he has a capacity of
60 hours, and is already assigned to some
Tasks, for a overall of
12 hours of
Remaining Work to do during the Sprint.
You can typically see this kind of view before or at the beginning of the
That’s a good start and could already be sufficiant for your context, but I found myself using very often another feature: The Task
This field enables us to categorize
tasks by affinity:
For instance, I often see teams composed of
C# developers. So instead of just seeing
600 hours of team capacity, would not it be better to get a little bit more detailed view and be able to see
300 hours of C# capacity and
120 hours of organization?
Note that by default, Activity field contains only
Testingvalues. If you want to use custom values as shown above, you need to customize the
If you don’t have access to the work item customization, you can still agree on a defined mapping inside the team such as
Requirementfor the team members related to organization, etc.
For this, you will need to come back once again to the Sprint Capacity tab and configure this time the
Activity of the Team member (and add multiple activities if the Team members needs to perform different type of tasks)
That’s all for this second part about
Sprint capacity preparation with Azure DevOps.
I hope this article could give you an overview of
capacity management with Azure DevOps. Of course, this article is heavily related to the next article which will talk about
getting a realistic scope of work for a Sprint. (I will try to write it as soon as possible not to let the suspens fade away haha)
Feel free to show your disagreements or any other opinion in the comments or in reply to my Twitter @vivienfabing. May the code be with you!