What is a Sprint Backlog?
The Sprint Backlog is the collection of work items that contain all the work that will be done by the development team during the current sprint to meet the Sprint Goal. The Sprint Backlog is crafted by the development team during the Sprint Planning. It is important that it is the development team who defines the Sprint Backlog based on the desired Sprint Goal and the Product Backlog because they take the ownership of the work.
Items on the Product- and Sprint Backlog are often defined as “User Stories”. In the Sprint Backlog, each item should have detailed tasks before development starts so it is clear what needs to be done in order to complete the User Story.
The Sprint Backlog should always be up-to-date. It is also the development team that updates the Sprint Backlog, since they have the ownership and do the work. During the Daily Scrum, the development team uses the Sprint Backlog to align and reflect if the Sprint Goal can be achieved. Keeping the Sprint Backlog up-to-date also creates transparency towards the Scrum Team about the progress within the Sprint.
The Sprint Backlog is also a living artifact just like the Product Backlog. This means that the content can change during the Sprint. This is however often misunderstood. Many people think that the Sprint Backlog is a fixed backlog which cannot change during the Sprint. This is however not the case. If new insights come up, the content of the Sprint Backlog can change as long as they are in line with the Sprint Goal.
Last but not least, the Sprint Backlog also contains at least one improvement that was defined during the Sprint Retrospective.