Maps over Backlogs: User Story Mapping to share the Big Picture

Track: Agile

A flat backlog presents problems understanding context of individual items. Determining the value of a user story in a vacuum is difficult, if not impossible. We need the big picture! User story mapping is a technique that can help us keep the big picture front and center. We will discuss the challenges with flat backlogs, how user story mapping can help with those, do an activity to build a story map and discuss how to integrate this technique into the work you’re already doing.


Mike Clement is a husband, father of four, and Founding Software Craftsman of Greater Sum. Passionate about agile technical excellence, Mike founded and organizes Software Craftsmanship Atlanta and the Lean+Agile Atlanta Unconference. Previous employers include Pluralsight, and Microsoft. Find out more about Mike on his blog ( and on Twitter at @mdclement.