Hackernoon logoTechnical Debt and Prioritization by@productschool

Technical Debt and Prioritization

Product School #1 Slack's community for Product Managers discussed issues regarding technical debt when it comes to prioritization. We allow for 20% of each sprint to be taken up with Tech Debt. Tech debt takes roughly 30% of our time to address. We keep it in a separate backlog and then have a discussion with the tech lead to see what pieces need to be pulled in during sprint planning. For every 5 days of Tech Debt, spend 2 days on bug fixes/UI fixes/Internal tooling, etc.
image
Product School Hacker Noon profile picture

@productschoolProduct School

Global leader in #ProdMgmt training. 1M+ community. Instructors are top PMs working @ Google, Netflix, Uber & Airbnb

This week Product School #1 Slack's community for Product Managers discussed issues regarding technical debt when it comes to prioritization. Check it out!

SmritiAug 5, 2021, 9:17 AM

hey guys, I feel like all the common prioritization techniques don’t consider tech debt and tech value for platform stability - I’m sensing a lot of frustration from the devs that we care about user value and don’t consider deprecating and upgrading.. anyone got any experience or suggestions on how to manage this?

🤔 1
Jack WoolleyAug 5, 2021, 9:25 AM

We allow for 20% of each sprint to be taken up with Tech Debt. We keep it in a separate backlog and then have a discussion with the tech lead to see what pieces need to be pulled in during sprint planning.

Claudiu MurariuAug 5, 2021, 9:36 AM

For us, tech debt is only considered if it is having an impact (and it has more often than we believe, we just need to look for it). So we actually always link tech debt to user value and we document it in our project management system. Tech debt takes roughly 30% of our time to address.
We have a small dev team but I would say they are happy with the current way of addressing debt.

Aman MittalAug 5, 2021, 10:29 AM

Hi Smriti, We spend around 20-40% of time to clear tech debt in each sprint. Depend upon ongoing projects and demand coming in. I guess your company is business driven. So lot of new demands coming in every now & then. I understand it becomes very difficult to manage. Just allocate some time in each sprint.

SmritiAug 5, 2021, 10:34 AM

Hey all that’s helpful thank you! And how do you prioritize the tech debt tasks in a big pool of tech related tasks (incl. automation etc)?

Will FangAug 6, 2021, 12:18 AM

Smriti how to prioritize your tech debt should be a conversation you need to have with your lead devs. When it comes to trimming down technical debt, you have to consider what implications will refactoring code have on your current timeline/product.

Here are some questions I would circulate with your dev team to help prioritize your technical debt:

  • Is the tech debt blocking the development of other features?
  • Can the product be continued with this debt in the future?
  • Is the fix small enough to fit in a current sprint without impacting the scope of work?

Yuting ChuAug 6, 2021, 5:01 AM

All good points above.

I would also add, you can a Tech Debt sprint usually during the holidays. Nothing much happens around this time anyways.

ie. December and early January which are Christmas, New Years

In terms of prioritizing Tech Debt, you have them develop their own prioritization framework. For the most part, as long as it doesn’t interfere significantly with the roadmap, you can careless.

You can also use this as leverage for negotiating with your devs.

ie. For every 5 days of Tech Debt, spend 2 days on bug fixes/UI fixes/Internal tooling, etc.

Did you enjoy this conversation? Join the #1 Slack Community For Product Managers

Join our private community to network with over 90,000 PMs.
Explore our industry-leading Slack channel, and discover for yourself how it became the most expansive community of Product Management across the world:

Weekly AMAs: Every week we host ‘Ask Me Anything’ sessions with top PMs in the industry. This open Q&A forum gives you the most impactful insider access to all your Product questions.

Resources: Specific and dedicated channels for all of the most important topics in product: #05_ask-for-help, #07_resume-review, #08_job-portal, #10_feedback-n-surveys, #11_product-launches, and more!

Careers: Searching for a career change? Or looking to get your foot in the Product door? Our Slack channel has daily job openings in Product that are posted by Product leaders looking for new qualified PMs to join their teams.

Network: Connect and network with Product people from your city or country in our local channels (#local_sanfrancisco, #local_europe, #local_singapore, and more!)

Join here https://productschool.com/slack-community/

To learn more about Slogging, or to partner with Hackernoon and add the Slogging Beta app to your Slack community and create beautifully crafted & curated Hackernoon drafts, visit Slogging.com



Tags

Join Hacker Noon

Create your free account to unlock your custom reading experience.