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Definition of Ready (DoR) vs Definition of Done (DoD


Introduction:


The world of software development is always changing and evolving. With new methodologies and approaches being developed all the time, it can be hard to keep up. Two terms that you may have heard of are the Definition of Ready (DoR) and the Definition of Done (DoD). But what do they mean? And how are they different?

In this blog post, we'll closely examine DoR and DoD. We'll discuss what they are, how they differ, and some things to keep in mind when implementing them. By the end, you'll better understand these two important concepts.


Definition of Ready :


When starting a new software development project, it's important that the team has a shared understanding of what "ready" means. The Definition of Ready (DoR) is a set of criteria that must be met before a user story can be considered "ready" for development. This ensures that there are no surprises or last-minute changes once work begins.

Depending on the team's process and conventions, items may enter a "ready" state at different development stages. However, in general, the following criteria should be met before an item can be considered "ready" −

  • The team has agreed to the definition and conditions required to start work on an item.

  • The goal is to eliminate any surprises or last-minute changes once work begins.

  • The team should have a shared understanding of what "ready" means.

  • Ready items should not require any further discussion before work can begin.



What Makes a Good Definition of Ready?


A good definition of ready is a guideline that shows a scrum team how ready a PBI is to be worked on. It should be:


  • Clear and concise

  • Understood by the developers 

  • Transparent and visible

  • Suggests readiness but isn't used a strict rule

  • The scrum team should inspect and adapt its usefulness 


While there's no right or wrong number of DoR conditions, an exhaustive list of pre-work will likely complicate the team's ability to start work items. Exhaustive pre-work also leads to performing work in stages, where one piece of work isn't started until a previous stage is fully completed. This will affect the agile team's ability to work fast, flexibly, and effectively. 



Definition of Done :


What does it mean for a user story to be "done"? The Definition of Done (DoD) is a set of criteria that must ensure all work is complete and meets necessary quality standards before it can be released. The conditions for done-ness vary depending on the team's process and conventions, but generally, the team should agree on the definition. The goal is to eliminate surprises or changes and has a shared understanding of what "done" means.


Example of a Definition of Done :


  • Design reviewed

  • Code completed

  • Tested

  • No known defects

  • Acceptance criteria are met or negotiated 

A PBI cannot be an increment if it doesn't meet the team's definition of done. By definition, PBIs that are experiments or hypotheses (which do not deliver value) do not meet the DoD and are not part of an increment. It's usually moved back to the product backlog for reordering and reconsideration if it's not done.


Are the Two Definitions Different?


Yes , DoR and DoD are two separate terms. The Definition of Ready (DoR) and the Definition of Done (DoD) are two sets of criteria used in project management. They are both used to ensure a user story is complete and ready for development or production. However, there are some key differences between the two definitions.



  • The most notable difference is in the timing of when each set of criteria is applied. The Definition of Ready is a set of criteria that must be met before a user story can be considered "ready" for development. This ensures that there are no surprises or last-minute changes once work begins. On the other hand, the Definition of Done is a set of criteria that must be met before a user story can be considered complete and ready for production.

  • Another key difference is in the focus of each definition. The Definition of Ready focuses on ensuring the team is prepared to begin work on a user story. In contrast, the Definition of Done focuses on ensuring that the user story is complete and meets all requirements.

  • Finally, the conditions for each definition may vary depending on the team's process and conventions. However, the team should generally agree on the definition and conditions required to start work (for the Definition of Ready) or finish work (for the Definition of Done).


What Should we Keep in Mind When Implementing DoR and DoD?

When implementing the Definition of Ready (DoR) and the Definition of Done (DoD), there are a few key points to keep in mind.


  • Tailoring the DoR and DoD to the specific project and team is important. The criteria for readiness and done-ness will vary depending on the project's goals, the team's process and conventions, and other factors.

  • It is important to get buy-in from the team. All team members should agree on the definition and conditions required to start or finish work.

  • It is important to review and update the DoR and DoD regularly. As the project progresses and changes, so too should the definitions of readiness and done-ness. By keeping these points in mind, you can ensure that the DoR and DoD are effective for your project.


Conclusion :


The Definition of Ready (DoR) and the Definition of Done (DoD) are two sets of criteria used in project management. They are both used to ensure a user story is complete and ready for development or production. However, there are some key differences between the two definitions.


When implementing the Definition of Ready (DoR) and the Definition of Done (DoD), it is important to tailor the definitions to the specific project and team, get buy-in from all team members, and review and update the definitions regularly. Doing so will help ensure that user stories are properly completed and ready for development or production before work begins, preventing surprises or changes later on down the line.


Reference :


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