Manage the Backlog

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Manage your backlog to maintain an organized view of upcoming and prioritized work. Managing the backlog consists of the following:

Video

Watch the video below to see an overview of actions you can take on the Backlog page, learn about some best practices and advanced tips, and access a list of frequently asked questions:

Build Your Backlog
6 min

Add backlog items

You can add a new user story, defect, or defect suite to the backlog page from the top of the backlog page, or Quick Add multiple items. You can add a work item with detail, or you can put in a minimum amount of information and add more later.

Do you have multiple items to add? At the top of the page, enter the Name in the blank provided and press Enter. Your new item is added and you are positioned in the Name field for your next entry.

After each action on the Backlog page, you receive an interactive status message. The message confirms your action and shows other actions that can be taken on the item.

Only child stories can be scheduled—parent stories do not display in the backlog.

By default, the backlog page is sorted in descending rank order. Any item entered using the box at the top or bottom of the page adds your new item to the bottom of the backlog page as the lowest rank.

To add items from the top of the page:

  1. Click the +Add New button at top of the page. The following options display:
  2. add to backlog
  3. Click the drop-down arrow to select the item type to add to your backlog.
  4. Enter the name of the new work item.
  5. Click Add to add the work item to the backlog with only the name defined, or click Add with Details to launch the full work item editor page.

    Your new backlog item is added to the bottom of the page indicating it has the lowest rank.

  6. Note: Use the flair that displays at the top of the page to move the new backlog item to the top of the page.

To add items on a specific place on the page:

  1. Click row action icon gear in the row above where you want your new item.
  2. Click Insert New Below and the same add bar from above appears in place.

    When you press Enter or click off the field, the new item is added directly below the current row.

To add a child user story:

  1. Select a user story row and click the row action icon gear.
  2. Select Add Child.

    The New Story editor displays with the Parent field auto-populated.

  3. When you save the new child, the original story is replaced by the new child story.

    A flair message displays at the top of the page confirming your child story was added. It also has a link to show the parent column in your display. The parent column helps you visualize the parent-child relationship.

To import stories:

  1. Select Page Tools in the upper-right corner of the Backlog page.
  2. Click Import User Stories.

Note: Verify your CSV file is correctly formatted by downloading and using the Data Import Template. The header columns in these templates must be exactly reproduced in your CSV file for successful import. Each template can be modified for your import.

Edit backlog items

You can edit any work item on the Backlog page inline, or you can launch the full editor.

To edit inline:

  1. Double-click in any field in the selected row to edit that field.
  2. While using inline edit mode, you can:
    • Use your tab key to move from field to field.
    • The up and down keyboard arrows move you to the same field on the row above or below your current one.
  3. Press Esc to cancel any inline field edit.
  4. Press Enter or click another field to save your changes.

To use the full editor, click the gear menu and select Edit.

editor

To enter bulk edit mode:

  1. Select more than one work item by selecting the check box next on each row. The gear menu switches to bulk edit mode bulk icon.
  2. Click the bulk edit mode gear menu, and select Edit.
  3. bulk edit
  4. Choose the field that you want to edit and enter or select a new value.
  5. Click Apply to edit the selected work items.

Note:
  • Any field that displays — indicates the field cannot be edited. This is because there are various values depending upon the work item type.
  • Use the Esc key to deselect a row.
  • After each action on the Backlog page, you receive an interactive status message. The message confirms your action and shows other actions that can be taken on the item.
  • You can quickly edit multiple fields of the same type. Enter your new value and press the up or down arrow on your keyboard. This action saves your entry and selects the next row, same field, for edit.
  • You can use supported HTML tags to highlight various rows on the page.

Customize the Backlog page

There are multiple ways that you can arrange or customize your Backlog page to make management of your backlog items easy.
You can:

  • Add columns: Click the Columns link and select any column headings to add (including your own custom fields). Click Apply.
  • Reorder columns: Drag and drop any column header to a new location.
  • Sort by column: Click the column header to sort in ascending or descending order.
  • Resize columns: Drag any column edge to resize it.
  • Pagination: Set your pagination options to display a specific number per page (up to 200), or use the standard Previous, Next, and so on commands.
Some columns cannot be sorted and are disabled because of variable values by work item type.

Before you can use drag-and-drop ranking, your view must be sorted by the Rank field.

Status columns

You may add one of the status columns to your Backlog page display to see the state of work items associated to your user story or defect. When displayed, the column will have a colored icon indicating the status of the associated items.

Note: These columns are also available inside of Custom Grid apps.

Task Status

Click a status icon to view a pop-up with detailed information on the tasks associated with the work item without leaving the page.

Icon Status
Dotted icon No tasks associated to the work item
Grey fill icon Tasks associated to the work item, all have a state of Defined
In Progress icon Tasks associated to the work item, at least one has a state of In Progress, none are blocked
Task Blocked icon Tasks associated to the work item, at least one is Blocked
Green check icon Tasks associated to the work item, all have a state of Completed, none are blocked

Defect Status

The Defect Status column is only applicable to user stories on the Backlog page. Click a status icon to view a pop-up with detailed information on the defects associated with the work item without leaving the page.

Icon Status
Dotted icon No defects associated to the user story
Red bug icon Defects associated to the user story, at least one does not have a state of Closed
Green check icon Defects associated to the user story, all have a state of Closed

Test Case Status

Icon Status
Dotted icon No test cases associated to the work item
Test cases associated to the work item, but no test case results have been entered
In Progress icon Test cases associated to the work item, all those with a result have a verdict of Pass, all other test cases have no results
Test cases associated to the work item, at least one with a result has a verdict other than Pass
Green check icon Test cases associated to the work item, all have results with a verdict of Pass

Discussion

Click a status icon to view a pop-up with detailed information on the discussions associated with the work item and add new comments without leaving the page. Use the Reply button to add a new comment. You may delete your old or erroneous comments by clicking the trashcan icon. Administrators may delete comments made by any user.

Icon Status
Dotted icon No comments exist on the work item.
Comments exist on the work item. The number next to the icon represents the total number of comments.

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