I understand spikes as being investigation tasks when there is an uncertainty about how a story should be done but my question is more about how to include a software architecture task in a Sprint.

As an example, we are starting a new project, working with Domain Driven Design (DDD) architecture concepts. For this new project, I don't want the Dev Team to start coding before defining how the back-end structure will look like. They might want to include some event-driven concepts, etc. in the structure and, in order to arrive to this conclusion, I need the architect to think about it and discuss solutions with the back-end Dev Team.

How, as a Product Owner, should I include those design/architecture tasks in the Sprint?

This is not the purview of the Product Owner (PO).

The PO should not care how the product is built - that concern lies with the Development Team. The PO should only care about what is built in what order.

In my experience, purely development tasks such as these should be created by the Dev Team, not the PO.

If something can be stated in a way that provides direct business value, then it should be a Story created by the PO. If not (as I believe is the case here), then it should be a Task created by the Dev Team.

Now, you can feel free to give suggestions to the Dev Team, but be aware that managing such tasks should not be part of your responsibilities.

  • yes i totally agree with you that it is not the PO's task to suggest any technical solution, this actually wasn't what I was trying to say, sorry if I expressed not clearly enough. So would it be a solution to create stories for the dev-team and to know that since for those stories there is a design/architecture work to be done, the story points should be defined accordingly? – jon Nov 20 at 16:30
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    @jon "purely development tasks such as these should be created by the Dev Team, not the PO". You don't create Stories for this. They create Tasks. – Sarov Nov 20 at 16:55

This is a question for which I have always been looking for an answer. With my experience with this, is how I am managing:

These kind of technical tasks are considered 'acceptance criteria'. Or you can have a story based on your infra-requirement, like:

"As a (role), I need the system to respond well when there is load of 10K concurrent requests"

OR

You can have a task/subtask of the story (assuming you are using a tool like JIRA).

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