Best Practices for Tagging Your Backlog

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Tagging is a powerful and important feature in the StarTeam Agile Backlog. By tagging your stories, you can easily filter them to find and organize your stories for sprint and release planning. Consistent tagging helps others to find stories and either add details or reduce the number of duplicate stories. Tags can be organized into categories with tags within the categories.

Categories are meant for broad grouping. Think of them as your chapter headings. Some examples could be:

  • Priority
  • Feature Type
  • Requested By

Tags describe specific details. Think of these as subheadings or content:

  • Priority levels such as high, medium, low
  • Feature types such as usability, tablet/mobile support, or reporting
  • Requested by product manager, customer (specific names), dev team ideas

Useful Tips

  • Be consistent - This is the most important rule. Pick a system and stick to it. You can use Server Tags to help with consistency across projects. 
  • Use nouns whenever possible - Use Developer or Development over Develop.
  • Use a singular base - Use Backlog over Backlogs.
  • Limit the use of abbreviations unless they are universally recognized - It may take longer to type but not everyone will abbreviate uncommonly abbreviated words the same way.
  • Tag key ideas or concepts for organizational purposes. Tags can be edited later but it is a good way to organize ideas. Even a Tag such as "Future Enhancement Ideas" can be used to hold those ideas that you come up with while talking to a customer at a conference but know exactly how or where they would fit in to the product.
  • Don't tag individuals. People come and go and a year later the name may not be meaningful but their role or idea might be when searching.
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