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Prioritize user assignments?

I know cases can be prioritized, but can FogBUGZ prioritize the assignments for an individual?

It's difficult for developers to cope with >1 "top" priorities :)

Benjamin Allfree
Monday, November 15, 2004

Do you mean like sub-prioritize?  I guess I need more guidance on what you are trying to achieve...

Michael H. Pryor
Fog Creek Software
Monday, November 15, 2004

In my shop, developers derive their daily to-do list from the open cases assigned to them. Anxietyand uncertainty run hand-in-hand, and so I have found that assigning a definite ordering to their case priorities helps them feel successful. Example:

Project A
  Case #1 - most important
  Case #2 - important

Project B
  Case #1 - important
  Case #2 - most important

If all four cases are assigned to one developer, he will see two "most important" cases and two "important" cases. How does he know which "most important" case to address first?

Benjamin Allfree
Monday, November 15, 2004

Ahh, I see.  Yes, we don't have a way to prioritize beyond the basic priorities of the cases.  Sorry!

Michael H. Pryor
Fog Creek Software
Monday, November 15, 2004

Does Fog Creek have a best practice recommendation for prioritizing tasks for developers?

Benjamin Allfree
Monday, November 15, 2004

We just use the priorities as they are.  If someone wants to work on a specific priority 1 case before another, that's ok.  As long as all the top priority cases are fixed first.

Michael H. Pryor
Fog Creek Software
Monday, November 15, 2004

Thanks.

I think it comes back to the project-centric rather than customer-centric focus of FogBugz. I can see your system working well for one product or one customer.

Benjamin Allfree
Monday, November 15, 2004

The system I came up with for our projects relies on fix-fors. For a given target release, we create three fix-fors:

"Project X Version 4.2 #1 (Must Fix)"
"Project X Version 4.2 #2 (If Time)"
"Project X Version 4.2 #3 (On Hold)"

and the project leads decide which category each bug/feature belongs in. This allows the project leads to prioritize from a project point of view, while the developers can use the Priority field to manage their own task lists (because a Project X "must fix" is not necessarily the highest priority for a given developer - other things might take precedence at a given moment).

David Thompson
Tuesday, November 16, 2004

This is a big missing feature for us. Management is always asking when the next feature is going to be done, and they're always promising it to the users early, sometimes before they ask me to write it! One project's priority over another is huge.

To make FogBugz work in this envirornment I've created a filter, grid view, sort by:

Fix For, then Priority, then Title.

We build often, something severals times a day so 'Fix For' doesn't really apply for us. So we have only three "realeses" in FogBugz:

Next Release
Release After Next
Undecided

Everything that management wants done right away goes under "Next Release".

Our priorities are all "Must Fix" for 1 through 7". 6 is "Fix If time" and 7 is "Don't Fix".

So as long as you have less then 5 items under "Next Release" you can assign them in priority order 1 through 5.

If you end up with more (I currently have 7) sometimes they still end up in the right order, simply by luck. If not, change the title to "1-Case Name". A crude hack, but it works. Change the case back before you resolve.

This won't work for everyone, but for an internal developer it works.

Certainly to be able to have simple Up and Down arrows in the grid view would be easier. Management likes to list everything on a white board and then say "do this, then this, then this, then that, in that order.". Unfortunetly they just don't do things that way at FogCreek.

T. Bradley Dean
Tuesday, November 23, 2004

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