Epics and Story Points



  • If we have a User Story that is determined to be an Epic, and we vertically slice the functionality into its logical parts and estimate the resulting User Stories and Tasks, is it best practice to only estimate the slices, and put a zero estimate on the Epic so as to not interfere with reporting?



  • An epic is generally considered as a coherent piece of work that is either a) too big to fit in a sprint, or b) too big to estimate.

    An epic is not a product backlog item (PBI). The work items that comprise it are PBIs.

    It's only the PBIs that need to be estimated.

    Thus, your intuition is correct. Typically, an epic is simply a container for smaller items, and there is no need to estimate the epic itself.

    Some ticketing tools may helpfully sum the estimates of the epic's contents to give you an overall estimate for the epic, which should not be treated as accurate of course but as a ballpark and as something you can use to burndown the epic.



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