Having a Definition of Ready means that stories must be immediately actionable. The Team must be able to determine what needs to be done and the amount of work required to complete the User Story or PBI. The Team must understand the "done" criteria and what tests will be performed to demonstrate that the story is complete. "Ready" stories should be clear, concise, and most importantly, actionable.
The stories at the top of the ordered Product Backlog, the stories the Team will be pulling into the Sprint Backlog, have to be Ready. Some companies actually require a detailed checklist to determine whether a story is “Ready Ready” not just kind of ready, or sort of ready. The slides demonstrate this process nicely. Simply getting your stories ready will have immediate, dramatic impact on the Team’s productivity.
The Product Owner is responsible for putting the features and stories in the backlog. However, the Team must work with the Product Owner during Backlog Refinement to help them get the stories into actionable shape. Only then will the Team be able to estimate how much work any one story will take and how many Points they can take into a Sprint. In the video in the tab below, Jeff walks through Ready criteria - the importance of having a story in an actionable state, estimated at the right size, prioritized to Business Value.
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