What Is Sprint Planning Timebox?
A timebox is a fixed period of time when a person or a team works towards an agreed goal. Agile project management uses timeboxing to keep work moving fast and on schedule. It is also a critical component of Scrum. A sprint planning timebox is the allocated time set aside to plan an upcoming spring, including story points, team capacity, risk and impediments, and more.
Timeboxing was first referenced towards the end of the 1980s in the context of “Rapid Iterative Production Prototyping” techniques and explained in more detail in James Martin’s “Rapid Application Development” book published in 1991.
Timeboxing in Scrum
Every event in Scrum is timeboxed. Below are some examples for each, bearing in mind that every Scrum project is planned differently, and therefore different periods of time apply.
Sprint - Between 1 and 4 weeks
Sprint Planning - 2 hours for each week in a Sprint
Daily Scrum - 15 minutes
Sprint Review - 2 to 4 hours
Sprint Retrospective - 60 to 90 minutes
Sprint planning timebox
Here is an example: if a sprint is four weeks long then the sprint planning session should be timeboxed at eight hours — two hours for each week.
Below is how a Scrum master may set the agenda for an all-day sprint planning session:
- Recap of the current sprint, closing off what was completed
- Review and re-prioritize what wasn’t completed, re-estimating story points and the team capacity
- Agree and finalize goals of the upcoming sprint
- Discuss risks and confidence levels