The Product Planning Workbook does not work with the Microsoft Visual Studio Scrum 1.0 process template out of the box. Fortunately, it doesn’t take much work to modify the workbook so it will work with the Scrum template.
Note: For information on the Iteration Backlog workbook, see my other post: Using The Iteration Backlog Workbook with the Scrum Template.
The existing Product Backlog query is very close to what you’ll need. However, there are two differences, one minor and one not so minor. The not so minor difference is that it needs to show product backlog items that have been closed so it can show you velocity of previous sprints. As a result, I chose to create a new query specifically for this workbook, which you can do by following these steps:
Your query results should now contain the Area Path column and show Done product backlog items.
You’ll need to obtain a copy of the Product Planning workbook, which is located in the MSF for Agile Software Development v5.0 process template. You can follow the instruction in my previous blog post on how to retrieve an “unbound” copy of this workbook: Customizing the Iteration Backlog Workbook.
Once you have the Product Planning workbook, here are the instructions on how to modify the workbook:
Now you’re ready to go. You can create copies of this workbook and then bind them to a specific team project. Once you’ve bound the workbook (instructions below), you can’t use the workbook with any other team project.
Your worksheet should now be ready to use.
This is great stuff!
I would love to know how "doable" it would be to bind to a project when the project is created (if I had this updated work book in my template).
That's a good idea for a blog post. I'm out of town at a conference, but I'll put it on my list of posts to work on. Basically, you need to add the workbook to the process template, and then "mark" it as requiring binding. The latter step is done with the XML that describes the process template. If you want to give it a try, the trick to binding a workbook to a query is in the wsstasks.xml file. You can find details here:
Hope that helps.
Thanks for your posts, great stuff!
We have several scrum teams and are currently using multiple xls in a hierarchical fashion to track the whole product backlog and are looking for alternatives (e.g. Rally, VersionOne, Thoughworks, etc.).
Do you think VS Scrum 1.0 can be used effectively for larger projects (e.g. with multiple scrums teams working from a single whole product backlog), or is it mainly useful for a single scrum team?