Mudassir Iqbal

In the context of Agile project management, release and release planning are closely linked concepts that play a crucial role in delivering features and functionalities to users.


A release refers to the delivery of a set of functionalities or features to the end user. This could be a new version of an app, a software update, or the launch of a new product entirely.

  • Frequency: In Agile, releases tend to happen more frequently compared to traditional project management approaches. This allows for faster feedback loops and quicker adaptation to changing needs.
  • Content: Releases can be major updates with significant new features or functionalities, or they can be minor updates focusing on bug fixes, performance enhancements, or minor improvements.
A release in agile software development is a deployable software package that can be made available before the end of an iteration of an application.

Release – Several Sprints worth of work directed to operations for possible rollout and testing

Release Planning:

Release planning is the process of defining, planning, and coordinating the activities involved in delivering a release. It involves tasks such as:

  • Identifying features and functionalities to be included in the release.
  • Estimating the effort and time required for development and testing.
  • Setting a release date and establishing a development timeline.
  • Identifying dependencies between different features and functionalities.
  • Planning communication and marketing activities for the release

Release planning enables organisations to make informed investment decisions; it sets expectations, aligns stakeholders and development teams; and it allows product people to guide the work of the dev team.

Release planning can help answer questions such as:

  • When will the project be completed?
  • Which features will be available by the end of the year?
  • How much will the project cost?
  • What are the critical dates and milestones?

Planning with the medium-term horizon of the team allows having a vision for the future so the architecture or design of the planned features can be adapted without having to redesign them.

Who is Involved?

  • Scrum Master − The scrum master acts as a facilitator for the agile delivery team.
  • Product Owner − The product owner represents the general view of the product backlog.
  • Agile Team − Agile delivery team provides insights on the technical feasibilities or any dependencies.
  • Stakeholders − Stakeholders like customers, program managers, subject matter experts act as advisers as decisions are made around the release planning.

Release Burndown Chart

Release Planning vs Spring Planning

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