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Top 10 Things an Agile Team Should Expect from the Product Owner

Updated: Feb 6, 2022

There are many responsibilities a Product Owner has within an Agile team. Here, we prioritize the Top 10 Things an Agile Team Should Expect from the Product Owner:

1. Communicates Product Vision

The product owner should be the most knowledgeable person of the product vision. They should communicate this vision to the team. The PO should know WHAT problems the product will solve, WHO the audience is and the overall benefit of this product.

2. Creates the Product Backlog

The Product Owner will collaborate with the stakeholders and users of the product to understand the product requirements. The PO will transform these requirements into user stories. In the digital world, a user story is a short description of a functionality for a digital product from an end-user perspective. These user stories will form the Product Backlog.

3. Make the Product Backlog visible, transparent and clear

The development team and stakeholders expect the product owner to make the Product Backlog visible, transparent and clear.

4. Owns and Prioritizes the Product Backlog

The PO works with the development team to refine the user stories and make sure the team fully understands each user story. The team expects the PO to own the Product Backlog and keep it prioritized at all times.

5. Handles Incoming requests

The team expects that any incoming requests for product enhancements or fixes from stakeholders or other teams, will go directly to the Product Owner, so they can be transformed into user stories.

6. Defines the Sprint Goal

During the Sprint Planning, which initiates the Sprint, the team expects the Product Owner to bring the highest priority user stories and the desired Sprint Goal.

7. Communicates Committed Sprint Goal

After the sprint planning is complete and the development team commits to the work that can be achieved during the sprint, based on their capacity, the Product Owner should communicate the committed sprint goal to all stakeholders.

8. Provides Support during Development stages

During the active sprint, the development team expects the Product Owner to be available to provide any clarifications that might be needed for the active user stories. The PO should participate in all Agile Scrum events as well.

9. Updates Product Backlog based on Feedback

At the end of the Sprint, the Product Owner invites the stakeholders to the Sprint Review. During this session, the PO, with the development team, discusses the outcome of the Sprint. Based on lessons learned from the Sprint and feedback received from the stakeholders, revisions are made to the Product Backlog.

10. Communicates Product Releases

Stakeholders expect the Product Owner to communicate at all times the Sprint status and any product functionality that has been released. Once any completed work is deployed and live, the product owner communicates product releases.

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