Story mapping is an effective inception tool which helps to create a visually structured tree, we know a Vision is achieved via goals. Goals are reached by completing activities. And to complete an activity, users needs to perform tasks. And these tasks can be transformed into user stories for software development.
A story map is a graphical, two-dimensional visualization of the product backlog. At the top of the map are the headings under which stories are grouped, usually referred to as ‘epics’ (big coarse-grained user stories), ‘themes’ (collections of related user stories) or ‘activities’. These are identified by orienting at the user’s workflow or “the order you’d explain the behavior of the system”. Vertically, below the epics, the actual story cards are allocated and ordered by priority. The first horizontal row is a “walking skeleton” and below that represents increasing sophistication.
User story benefits:
- Improve communication with stakeholders.
- Helps to define Minimum Viable Product (MVP) based on clear prioritization
- Slicing large requirements into smaller items.
- Avoid or reduces the backlog grooming time.
- Provides birds view of product goals and vision.
- Shows simplified version of User journey.
User story maps help product teams keep focused on the business value and release features that are valued by the customers.