Interactive session integrates Planning Poker game into the Jira Cloud environment, facilitating discussion and results in estimations based on consensus in a convenient way.
Interactive session is a must-have Jira integrated estimation tool based on the Planning Poker game. It facilitates discussion and results in estimations based on consensus. Might be used by any team, whether you are a remote or colocated team; the main requirement to all team members is to participate in the session at the same time.
Any team member can join or create the session from a Board/Backlog view of a specific Jira project (checkout Navigation for different project types article). You may create and run multiple Interactive sessions in parallel.
The session is created by following a 3-step wizard (check screenshots below) where you are asked to provide:
Estimation values: choose one of the commonly used sets of estimation values, like Fibonacci sequence, Modified Fibonacci, T-shirt sizes, SML (mini T-shirt sizes), Time estimates, or use any custom set your team prefers.
Although the estimation field must be in numeric or time format, you can display a string for voting values, just use the following format of a string equals a number: “Small=1”
Time values are also available from 100.4.2 version. Use values like "1w" for 1 week, "1d" for 1 day, "1h" for 1 hour", "1m" for one minuter, or their combination like "1w 2d 3h 4m"
Timer values: during the estimation session, a moderator might launch a timer to limit discussion or voting time. This is the place where timer options are configured.
Suggested estimate: select what suggested estimate you will see once all voles are done: Consensus, Average, or Average Integer
Additionally, you can use "Save this configuration as my personal default" option during session creation to remember current settings and participants list for future sessions. Note that the default configurations are saved per user per board, meaning that for another board's sessions you will have separate default settings. Another peculiarity of this feature is that it is shared between all of the session types. For example, participants list saved during Interactive session creation will be pre-populated when you create a session of any other type.
For private sessions, the session creator is suggested and pre-populated as moderator.
Team members can join an active session from the Agile Poker session selection page or all sessions page. Alternatively, you can share the session link with your team by copying it from the address bar, the bread crumbs section, or from the participants' management menu; click on Participants from the top right to open it. Participants button is also available as a top option at the beginning of each session before the estimation process is started:
Remember that private sessions can be only accessed by Jira users added to the participants list. Other users will get an error message when trying to access a private session.
Manage participants window:
Moderator. Choose a moderator to give them exclusive control over the Agile Poker session. Otherwise, everyone could control the session.
Estimators. Pick the people that estimate with you. You can remove people that are currently disconnected from the estimation session. Agile Poker will automatically show voting results only after all estimators provide an estimation value.
Observers. Pick the people that participate in the session with you, but who don't need to estimate. Might be rookies, people outside the team, Scrum masters or project managers that don't do estimations, etc.
Session link. Copy and share with your team to join a particular session.
The status of each participant is displayed in the participants' area:
Every participant can easily change Observer/Estimator status using the eye icon next to the Participants:
After starting the session, click on the cogwheel icon located in the top right corner to open the Configuration view:
The configuration view:
From the breadcrumbs, you can easily navigate to the corresponding board or to Agile Poker board page, check the session type and visibility settings (the lock means the session is private), copy the session link:
Navigation tips. Every new user is prompt to go through navigation tips, that are also available from the session navigation menu. Click Session → Take a tour to open it:
observe the type of Jira issue, its name, ID, and current estimation value;
filter the issues for a particular session; click on the edit icon next to “Picked issue” and “JQL query” to modify them;
select a user story for estimation by clicking on the story;
hide/unhide backlog list;
observe total Story Points value of a sprint, or filtered part of the backlog next to the “Estimate”;
reload issue list if necessary:
In case of the presence of issues with Epic or Sub-task type, their estimates will be summed up to the total Sprint/Section estimate, while their estimates are not calculated in sprint velocity in Jira. For Team-managed projects and Scrum boards of Company-managed projects, all epics are displayed in a single section at the top.
All of the standard Jira's issue options are available here without a need of opening the issue in a separate tab:
Clicking on the Eye icon switches you to the Observer mode - you participate in the session but you are not estimating. Observers have an eye icon indicator next to their avatars. In order to switch back to Estimation mode, use Cards icon next to the Participants title or here:
Once all the estimates are submitted or the moderator clicks on the 'Show estimates' button, chosen values are shown next to the team members' avatars and the discussion phase starts:
Participants can update their personal estimates before the final estimate is submitted. In order to update the personal estimate, click on the pencil icon next to your estimate:
The update process looks like this:
“Your estimation for Story Points” part stands for displaying estimation values set for this session. You can easily switch between dropdown and card view by clicking on the view button:
For the dropdown view, the “Triangulation” panel is available. It dynamically shows resolved issues with the same estimation value as the selected (hovered) one for easing the selection process. Issues for triangulation are picked up from the same project with priority for the lately closed issues of the same type and with the same components.
Below there is the 'Reference issues' panel - 3 static pre-selected issues for default references:
Reference issues are saved to the user profile of the user configuring them, so the next time such a user creates a session, the reference issues will be pre-populated.
“Final estimation for Story Points” replaces “Your estimation for Story Points” once all the participants have provided estimates or the moderator clicked on the 'Show estimates' button, indicating a new estimation phase - final estimation. Knowing all the team estimation values from the Participants section, the discussion starts. Below, you can find examples of moderator and participant views:
Once the discussion is done, the final estimation is selected and approved by clicking on Save or Save & next on the moderator’s side. The reset option here restarts the voting process for the issue under the estimation. That’s it for this issue!
Timer. A moderator can launch a timer to limit discussion or voting time. Timer options might be configured in session configuration.
When a team member steps out of the estimation process, he/she should use the Leave session option from the Session menu. In this case, the member is removed from the Participants list, his/her avatar is gone from the participants area. The participant can re-join the session afterward if it's a public one. But for the private session, they should be re-invited.
Check out other estimation sessions offered by Agile Poker for Cloud:
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