I work essentially for 3 companies. A development team consisting of members from the 3 different companies will be formed to build 1 related product (w/ several versions). The complex part is that, because our team consists of members from different companies, some of the time other members of the development team will be doing tasks for different projects. We used Jira to keep track of the issues we need to work on. Would it be better to keep 1 product and sprint backlog for the 1 development team and keep all items for all projects in those backlogs? Would this also mean that there should only be 1 product owner for all projects that would be interacting with various stakeholders, product managers, senior management, etc. of different projects?

The point that I am trying to raise in this setup (1 product backlog and 1 PO) is if a developer is already committed to a sprint of the project, then no one should be able to assign new tasks for this developer except the product owner. Only the product owner should interface with the assigner of the new tasks (coming from stakeholders or clients of different projects) to uphold the sprint commitment, right?

  • Would you elaborate how big is the team of the product, and how dependent the versions of each other? You can always have one backlog but based on other factors you decide whether it's one board/sprint/PO or several ones
    – Yassmeen
    Commented Jan 15, 2019 at 10:21
  • The development team is about 3-5 members only and a team member can do multiple projects or no project at all for several days in a 2 week cycle. Most of us work in the same office with the exception of 1 team member who is part time and working remotely. The main product's versions will be highly dependent to each other while other projects are for different products. I am imagining that if we do have different backlogs for each products of 1 Dev team then the Sprint of the main product would contain partial sprints for some members and would be harder to ensure their commitments for main.
    – ATSG
    Commented Jan 15, 2019 at 10:32

1 Answer 1


In my opinion, the idea of one product backlog/PO makes sense with that size of the team. Also, to try to minimize the effect of new tasks from other projects, would the idea of dedicating a couple of fixed days for external work and take account of that in the sprint. For instance the sprint is 10 days of work but when you do the planning you account only for eight days because the other two days will be external work and you can add a ticket for unplanned task to see how the external work affects the sprint to be able to communicate it to the stakeholders if needed.

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