Feature: A feature is a high-level description of a piece of functionality that a product or system should have. It is a specific, measurable, and valuable functionality that provides a specific benefit to the user. Features are typically used to describe the overall capabilities of a product or system, and are used to guide the development process.

Epic: An epic is a larger feature that can be broken down into smaller stories. It is a user-centric, large-scale requirement that can be broken down into smaller chunks of work.

Theme: A theme is a collection of features or epics that are grouped together based on a common goal or area of functionality. Themes help to organize and prioritize the work that needs to be done and align it with the overall goals of the project.

User Story: A user story is a short, simple description of a feature from the perspective of the end user. It is written in the form of a sentence or phrase that describes the desired functionality from the user’s point of view. It is a way of capturing the requirements of a feature in a format that is easy for developers to understand and implement.

Task: A task is a specific piece of work that needs to be done in order to complete a user story or feature. It can be considered as a small step to complete a user story or feature. It is usually more detailed and specific than a user story, and it is assigned to a specific individual or team to complete.

Themes, epics, stories, and tasks in scrum

The relation between Epic, Theme, User Stories, Tasks and Features

The relationship between features, epics, themes, user stories, and tasks is hierarchical. Features and epics are used to describe the overall functionality of a product or system, while themes and user stories are used to organize and break down that functionality into smaller, more manageable chunks of work. Tasks are used to further break down user stories and epics into specific, actionable items that can be assigned to individual team members.

Example

Here is an example of how a feature, epic, theme, user story, and the task might be used to describe the functionality of an online shopping system:

  1. Feature: “Add to cart” – This feature allows users to add items to their shopping cart while browsing the website.
  2. Epic: “Checkout process” – This epic includes all the functionality related to the process of checking out and purchasing items on the website, such as entering shipping information, selecting a payment method, and reviewing the order.
  3. Theme: “Payment options” – This theme includes all the functionality related to the different payment options available on the website, such as credit card, PayPal, and cash on delivery.
  4. User Story: “As a user, I want to be able to pay for my order with a credit card so that I can quickly and easily complete my purchase.”
  5. Task: “Implement a credit card payment gateway” – This task involves integrating a credit card payment gateway into the website so that users can pay for their orders using a credit card. This task is assigned to a specific developer or team to complete.

Another example could be of how a feature, epic, theme, user story, and the task might be used to describe the functionality of a project management tool:

  1. Feature: “Task assignment” – This feature allows team members to assign tasks to each other within the project management tool.
  2. Epic: “Collaboration and communication” – This epic includes all the functionality related to collaboration and communication within the project management tool, such as task assignment, team chat, and file sharing.
  3. Theme: “File sharing” – This theme includes all the functionality related to the ability to share and access files within the project management tool.
  4. User Story: “As a team member, I want to be able to upload and access project-related files within the project management tool, so that we can share and collaborate on them easily.”
  5. Task: “Implement file upload functionality” – This task involves creating the necessary code and UI elements to allow team members to upload files to the project management tool. This task is assigned to a specific developer or team to complete.

The example shows how each element builds on the previous one, starting with a high-level feature, breaking it down into an epic, and then into themes, user stories and tasks, in order to provide a clear and simple overview of a system’s functionality and how it will interact with other systems or actors.

Features vs Epic

Features and epics are both used in Agile development to describe the functionality of a product or system, but they have some key differences:

  1. Scope: Features are high-level descriptions of specific, measurable, and valuable functionality that provides a specific benefit to the user. They are typically smaller in scope and can be completed within a single sprint. Epics, on the other hand, are larger and more complex features that are too big to be completed within a single sprint. They are often broken down into smaller chunks of work, such as user stories.
  2. Level of detail: Features are usually described in more detail than epics and are more specific in terms of what they are trying to achieve. Epics are usually described in more general terms and are less specific in terms of what they are trying to achieve.
  3. Timeframe: Features can be completed within a single sprint, while epics typically span multiple sprints.
  4. Prioritization: Features are prioritized based on their importance to the end user and the overall goals of the project, while epics are prioritized based on the business value they provide.
  5. Alignment: Features are aligned with the overall goals of the project, while epics are aligned with the project’s vision and strategic objectives.

In summary, Features are smaller, more specific, and shorter-term pieces of work, while Epics are larger, more general, and longer-term pieces of work. Both are used in Agile development to guide the development process and ensure that the final product meets the needs of the end user.

Theme vs Epic

  1. Scope: A theme is a collection of features or epics that are grouped together based on a common goal or area of functionality. Themes help to organize and prioritize the work that needs to be done, and align it with the overall goals of the project. Epics, on the other hand, are larger and more complex features that are too big to be completed within a single sprint. They are often broken down into smaller chunks of work, such as user stories.
  2. Level of detail: Themes are usually described in more general terms and group related functionality together, while epics are usually described in more specific terms and define a specific functionality or user need.
  3. Alignment: Themes align with the overall goals and objectives of the project, while epics align with the project’s vision and strategic objectives.
  4. Prioritization: Themes are prioritized based on their importance to the overall goals of the project and how well they align with the project’s objectives, while epics are prioritized based on the business value they provide.

Reference

Agile Project Management

Agile Project Management – Project Management Seminars (PMP) ; 2 Sep, 2018

Themes, epics, stories, and tasks in the scrum

Epics, Stories, Themes, Tasks

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