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My team, which consists of network architects and developers has been running Scrum for the past couple of months and the biggest issue we have is how we're supposed to record BAU work.

We consider BAU work to be things that are repeatable (i.e. provisioning a new user account) that we have to do from time to time that do not relate to our project at all. We can't give these tasks to people outside of the project because we're a small team and have day to day functions outside of the project.

We use a JIRA project to run our Sprints and have considered using Trello or another JIRA project to keep track of our BAU work. We haven't implemented any of these yet since we're still mulling over potential options and haven't identified success criteria yet.

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I have seen three variants depending on the nature of interrupting tasks:


1) Capacity

If the work is very evenly distributed, just subtract it from the capacity beforehand.

Example:

Every developer in the team has a one-hour one-on-one meeting with heir line manager during each sprint. Every developer has to fill out their timesheets. There is a scheduled fire alarm drill for all personal in the building this sprint.


2) As a story

If the work is predictable, make a story of it, estimate it and put it into the sprint.

Example:

After the rollout of the new library, the sister team will need help implementing it in their own product. Questions or difficulties are not known yet, but will arise as soon as they start working.


3) Batman

If random requests will pop up in random frequencies and random quality, you need someone to answer the red bat-phone when it rings.

Decide on a single person per sprint who will handle all those requests. Their work will probably be interrupted constantly. They might not produce anything towards the goal of this sprint. But at least the interruptions got contained and the rest of the team could focus on the sprint at hand. In addition, it's easier to measure how much time was lost to those tasks, compared to giving them to different people and having to come up with a number afterwards.

Example:

any kind of support work.

  • For Capacity, how would you go about recording that? Given that you're accounting for it in Sprint planning, but where could we record it and keep track of it? I wish we could do the Batman route but the BAU work varies from Administrative to network infrastructure to development work that no singular person can do it. – DoTheDoe May 24 at 13:09
  • Well, we have a planned capacity and an actual capacity, one being an estimate before the sprint and one being the facts after the sprint. We keep both in an Excel sheet per sprint, but you can keep it wherever you want. – nvoigt May 24 at 13:13

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