What are the INVEST criteria for building DSS?

by Daniel J. Power
Editor, DSSResources.COM

The Agile Alliance ( glossary states "the acronym INVEST helps to remember a widely accepted set of criteria, or checklist, to assess the quality of a user story. If the story fails to meet one of these criteria, the team may want to reword it, or even consider a rewrite (which often translates into physically tearing up the old story card and writing a new one). A good user story should be:

"I" ndependent (of all others)
"N" egotiable (not a specific contract for features)
"V" aluable (or vertical)
"E" stimable (to a good approximation)
"S" mall (so as to fit within an iteration)
"T" estable (in principle, even if there isn't a test for it yet)

The INVEST checklist for quickly evaluating user stories originates in an article by Bill Wake (2000), which also repurposed the acronym SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-boxed) for tasks resulting from the technical decomposition of user stories. Wake argued INVEST was a good reminder of the characteristics of a good quality Product Backlog Item.

In 2004, the INVEST acronym is among the techniques recommended in Mike Cohn's "User Stories applied", which discusses it at length in Chapter 2.

Last update: 2018-07-16 12:16
Author: Daniel Power

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