Intrinsic Difficulty

[in-trin-sik, -zik dif-i-kuhl-tee, -kuh l-tee]

Definition of Intrinsic Difficulty

The Intrinsic Difficulty of a Story is inherent in the Acceptance Criteria, and, for a Functional Story, is based on the complexity involved in the design activities themselves and the complexity of the resulting designs and algorithms.


When estimating Acceptance-Based Stories we need to ignore Impediments caused by Environmental Variables (Organizational Noise, Team Ability, Technical Debt, SME Availability, and others specific to your environment); we ignore the portion of the effort that is based on the Team and the Organization and focus only on the Story’s Intrinsic Difficulty.

If ‘Story ABC’ is a Functional Story, ask the question: ‘Which exemplar Story is most like, in terms of Intrinsic Difficulty, given that the codebase is clean, the best people work on it, and so on…’ and assign ‘Story ABC’ the same number of SPs as this exemplar.

Cite This Term

"Intrinsic Difficulty" Accessed Jun 22, 2024.