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Planning, ranking, and priorities

Planning, ranking, and priorities field reference

You use planning, ranking, and priority fields to specify which work the team should complete first. By ranking and prioritizing work items, all team members gain an understanding of the relative importance of the work that they must accomplish. Ranking and priority fields are used to build several reports.

You rank and prioritize work items when you Manage the product backlog.

The following table describes the fields that you can use to plan and prioritize work and that are common to all default process templates. For information about data types and default field attributes, see Define and modify work item fields.

Field name

Description

Reference name

Data type

Default value of the reportable type attribute

Default value of the index attribute

Business Value

A subjective unit of measure that captures the relative business value of a product backlog item or feature compared to other items of the same type. An item that is assigned a higher number should be considered as having more business value than an item that is assigned a lower number.

Added to these work item types (WITs):Epic, Feature

Microsoft.VSTS.Common.BusinessValue

Integer

Measure

False

Priority

A subjective rating of the bug, issue, task, or test case as it relates to the business. You can specify the following values:

  • 1:  Product cannot ship without the successful resolution of the work item, and it should be addressed as soon as possible.

  • 2:  Product cannot ship without the successful resolution of the work item, but it does not need to be addressed immediately.

  • 3:  Resolution of the work item is optional based on resources, time, and risk.

See Note 1.

Added to these WITs: Bug, Change Request, Epic, Feature, Impediment, Issue, Product backlog item, Requirement, Risk, Shared Step, Task, Test Case, User Story

Microsoft.VSTS.Common.Priority

Integer

Dimension

False

Severity

A subjective rating of the impact of a bug on the project. You can specify the following values:

  • 1 - Critical

  • 2 - High

  • 3 - Medium

  • 4 - Low

See Note 1.

Added to these WITs: Bug, Issue, Risk

Microsoft.VSTS.Common.Severity

String

Dimension

False

Time Criticality

A subjective unit of measure that captures the how the business value decreases over time. Higher values indicate that the epic or feature is inherently more time critical than those items with lower values.

Added to these WITs: Epic, Feature,

Microsoft.VSTS.Common.TimeCriticality

Double

None

False

Value Area

The area of customer value addressed by the epic, feature, or backlog item. Values include:

  • Architectural – technical services to implement business features that deliver solution

  • Business – services that fulfill customers or stakeholder needs that directly deliver customer value to support the business (Default)

See Note 1.

Added to these WITs: Epic, Feature,

Microsoft.VSTS.Common.BusinessValue

String

None

False

  1. To change the menu selection, see Define pick lists.

The following table describes the fields that you can use to plan and prioritize work when you use the work item types provided with the Visual Studio Scrum process template.

Field name

Description

Reference name

Data type

Default value of the reportable type attribute

Default value of the index attribute

Acceptance Criteria

A description of the criteria to be met before the bug or product backlog item can be closed.

Before work begins on a bug or product backlog item, the criteria for customer acceptance should be described as clearly as possible. Conversations between the team and customers to define the acceptance criteria will help ensure that your team understands your customers’ expectations. The acceptance criteria can be used as the basis for acceptance tests so that you can more effectively evaluate whether an item has been satisfactorily completed.

Added to these WITs: Bug, Epic, Feature, Product backlog item

Microsoft.VSTS.Common.AcceptanceCriteria

HTML

None

False

Backlog Priority (Note 1)

A number usually assigned by a background process used to track the list order of items on a backlog or board in the web portal.

Added to these WITs: Bug, Epic, Feature, Product backlog item, Task

Microsoft.VSTS.Common.BacklogPriority

Double

Dimension

False

Blocked

Indicates whether a team member is prevented from making progress toward implementing a task.

You can specify Yes or leave it blank.

Added to these WITs: Task

Microsoft.VSTS.CMMI.Blocked

String

Dimension

False

Resolution

Describes how the impediment was resolved.

Added to these WITs: Impediment

Microsoft.VSTS.Common.Resolution

HTML

None

False

  1. The sequence of items on the product backlog page is determined according to where you have added the items or dragged the items on the page. As you drag items, a background process updates the Backlog Priority field which is assigned to type="Order" in the ProcessConfiguration file. See Configure and customize Agile planning tools for a team project.

    The Backlog Priority field doesn’t appear on the work item form. (To learn why, see Where is the field on the work item form to order the backlog?.

    To add the field to the form, modify the WIT definition to add the following control element:

    <Control FieldName="Microsoft.VSTS.Common.StackRank" Type="FieldControl" Label="Stack Rank" LabelPosition="Left" />

    To learn more, see Import, export, and manage work item types [witadmin].

The following table describes the fields that you can use to plan and prioritize work when you use the work item types defined for the Agile process template.

Field name

Description

Reference name

Data type

Default value of the reportable type attribute

Default value of the index attribute

Risk

A subjective rating of the relative uncertainty around the successful completion of a user story.

Defined allowed values are:

  • 1 - High

  • 2 - Medium

  • 3 - Low

Added to these WITs: Epic, Feature, User Story

Microsoft.VSTS.Common.Risk

String

Dimension

False

Stack Rank (Note 1)

A number usually assigned by a background process used to track the list order of items on a backlog or board in the web portal.

Added to these WITs: Bug, Epic, Feature, Issue, Task, User Story, Task

Microsoft.VSTS.Common.StackRank

Double

Dimension

False

  1. The sequence of items on the product backlog page is determined according to where you have added the items or dragged the items on the page. As you drag items, a background process updates the Stack Rank field which is assigned to type="Order" in the ProcessConfiguration file. See Configure and customize Agile planning tools for a team project.

    The Stack Rank field is defined for the following work item types in the Agile process template: Bug, Feature, Issue, Task, and User Story.

    The Stack Rank field doesn’t appear on the work item form. (To learn why, see Where is the field on the work item form to order the backlog?.

    To add the field to the form, modify the WIT definition to add the following control element:

    <Control FieldName="Microsoft.VSTS.Common.StackRank" Type="FieldControl" Label="Stack Rank" LabelPosition="Left" />

    To learn more, see Import, export, and manage work item types [witadmin].

The following table describes the fields that you can use to plan and prioritize work when you use the work item types provided with the MSF formal or CMMI process template.

Field name

Description

Reference name

Data type

Default value of the reportable type attribute

Default value of the index attribute

Blocked

Indicates whether a team member is prevented from making progress toward implementing a requirement or task or resolving a bug, change request, or risk. If an issue has been opened to track a blocking problem, a link should be made to the issue.

You can specify Yes or No.

Added to these WITs: Bug, Change Request, Requirement, Risk, Task

Microsoft.VSTS.CMMI.Blocked

String

Dimension

False

Committed

Indicates whether the requirement is committed in the project or not. You can specify Yes or No.

Added to these WITs: Requirement

Microsoft.VSTS.CMMI.Committed

String

None

False

Escalate

Indicates whether the issue is affecting the critical path of the project plan. You can specify Yes or No.

Added to these WITs: Issue

Microsoft.VSTS.CMMI.Escalate

String

None

False

Stack Rank (Note 1)

A number, usually assigned by a background process, used to track the list order of items on a backlog or board in the web portal.

Added to these WITs: Bug, Epic, Feature, Requirement, Risk, Task

Microsoft.VSTS.Common.StackRank

Double

Dimension

False

Triage

Indicates the type of triage decision that is pending for the work item. You use this field when the work item is in the Proposed state.

You can specify one of the following values:

  • Pending (default)

  • More Info

  • Info Received

  • Triaged

Added to these WITs: Bug, Change Request, Epic, Feature, Issue, Requirement, Task

Microsoft.VSTS.Common.Triage

String

Dimension

False

  1. The sequence of items on the product backlog page is determined according to where you have added the items or dragged the items on the page. As you drag items, a background process updates the Stack Rank field which is assigned to type="Order" in the ProcessConfiguration file. See Configure and customize Agile planning tools for a team project.

    The Stack Rank field is defined for the following WITs: Bug, Feature, Requirement, Risk, and Task.

    The Stack Rank field doesn’t appear on the work item forms. (To learn why, see Where is the field on the work item form to order the backlog?.

    To add the field to the form, modify the WIT definition to add the following control element:

    <Control FieldName="Microsoft.VSTS.Common.StackRank" Type="FieldControl" Label="Stack Rank" LabelPosition="Left" />

    To learn more, see Import, export, and manage work item types [witadmin].

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