Backlog Refinement (Grooming)

Frequency: Once or twice per sprint (Not mandatory)

Meeting length: 2 - 4 hours

Backlog refinement (formerly known as backlog grooming) is when the product owner and some, or all, of the rest of the team review items on the backlog to ensure the backlog contains the appropriate items, that they are prioritized, and that the items at the top of the backlog are ready for delivery.

Backlog Refinement Checklist


Items should be discussed and prioritized based on customer / market needs.

Decomposition of Items

The issues should be completed within a sprint, thus, if there are any issues that are not

Cleanup of Deprecated Items

Some of the issues may be deferred due to change of requirements or necessity of that feature, thus, cleanup of the backlog items can be done here.

What to avoid in your grooming?


This has its’ own meeting, attendees should not discuss the sprints that these items will be developed.

Old Issues - Completed Sprints

This meeting is to clean the backlog, completed items are not in scope of this meetings.

Performance and Forecasting

These can be done during retrospective, this has nothing to do with the grooming meetings.

Other grooming tips:

  • PO can discuss priorities and requirements with stakeholders before the meeting.
  • Weight (or any other measurement types) can be added during this meeting.
  • Not everyone is needed in this meeting.

Referenced from here and here