“Acceptance criteria” are a set of conditions that must be fulfilled by a software product in order to be approved by clients, customers, or users. They are distinct for every user story and highlight the perspective of users.
In fact, an acceptance criteria plan is a contract between your customer and you that would set the standards of the product which have to be attained to get final approval.
A well-designed acceptance criteria plan will not put you in trouble at the end stage by avoiding unwanted results and it makes certain that the client and users are completely content with the resulting product.
A very vital factor regarding the acceptance criteria plan (AC) is that it has to be discussed comprehensively prior to the development group beginning the execution of a distinct user story. Contrarily, there is a risk that the deliverables will not be up to the mark of the clients.
Project Acceptance Criteria Plan Template serves as a crucial document that outlines the specific conditions and requirements that must be met for a project to be considered successful and accepted by stakeholders.
This plan acts as a formal agreement between the project team and the stakeholders, ensuring a clear understanding of expectations and objectives from the outset.
Check out Project Initiation Document Template in Excel as a Related Template.
HOW ARE ACCEPTANCE CRITERIA CREATED?
This plan comprises deliverables, the acceptance test trials, standards to be achieved, the criteria, and a plan for accomplishment. The template of the acceptance action plan will help to attain acceptance by;
- Synthesizing a complete list of deliverables.
- Defining the criteria for acquiring the user’s approval.
- Enlightening the acceptance standards to be achieved.
GIVEN | WHEN | THEN EXAMPLE
WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF ACCEPTANCE CRITERIA PLAN?
The basic purposes of the acceptance criteria plan are listed below as the knowledge of the user’s requirements is a very important goal:
ADDING MORE DETAIL TO THE FEATURE SCOPE
Acceptance criteria describe the horizon of user stories. They deliver even minute details regarding the functionality that allow the working group to comprehend whether the story is perfect and operates as expected.
ENLISTING NEGATIVE SCENARIOS:
The acceptance plan you are creating must need a proper system to identify unauthorized password inputs and refrain a user from progressing further.
This format of an invalid password is an instance of a negative scenario at times when a user acts unexpectedly. An AC elaborates on such situations and describes how to handle them.
It is one of the important purposes of AC that it harmonizes the perspectives of the development team along with the client. They make certain that all the individuals involved should have some understanding of the goals.
Developers know their job and what sort of attributes the feature must depict, while the client and the stakeholders realize the expectations from the feature.
ORGANIZING ACCEPTANCE TESTING:
The acceptance criteria plan is the ground for the acceptance testing of a user story. Every acceptance criterion has to be testable autonomously and then decide clear standards of a pass and fail. Automated tests can also be utilized to validate the user story.
DIRECTING FEATURE EVALUATIONS:
The acceptance criteria plan identifies what precisely has to be created by the team. When the developing team gap accurate requirements, they would be able to converge stories into tasks that can be rightly executed.
As different individuals have their own points of view and approaches to finding solutions to the same problem, therefore, devising a single vision for the implementation of the functionality is essential. This is exactly the job of a written acceptance criteria plan.
The template typically begins with a concise summary of the project’s purpose, scope, and key deliverables. It then proceeds to list the acceptance criteria, which are measurable and verifiable indicators of success.
These criteria are often aligned with the project’s goals and objectives, covering aspects such as functionality, performance, quality, and timelines.
Related Template: Project Initiation Document Template
CHECKLIST OF ACCEPTANCE CRITERIA PLAN TEMPLATE
- Initially, an updated document about the acceptance criteria of the project is required.
- You have to describe the characteristics of the deliverable in detail clearly; this is done by the project manager after knowing the requirements of the clients. It is wise to get a draft of the desired product from the user along with the quality needed to be discussed. Audits and trials are arranged to know if the standard is met or not.
- Perform an on-site confirmation test to visualize the functionality of the end product. Thoroughly observe the necessary quality control level that was set in the plan.
- In order to check the usability, see all the functions. It will provide the intuition of whether the installation procedure is accurate or not.
- Preceding all the quality check measurements, arrange a gathering of related individuals for acceptance review. The results of all the functional and technical tests conducted should be discussed. For each criterion, sign the document. To conclude the deal, enclose a duplicate of all certificates of quality tests and display it to the customer with the end product.
IMPACT OF ACCEPTANCE CRITERIA ON DEVELOPMENT PROCESS
For a software development process, it is quite rare to proceed as planned from beginning to end, exclusively for intricate products.
In such cases, it will cause a lot of expense to make changes frequently in the process and also take more time than estimated. With the assistance of an acceptance criteria plan, the executing team would work efficiently and fluently because the scope of the project and the final product is properly documented and arranged.
The client and the team owing to the easy approach to the software development progress can trace any mistake at any point.
BENEFITS OF ACCEPTANCE CRITERIA PLAN
- This approach involves the user story which is used by the team as the primary objective to determine the quality and progress of the product.
- The synchronization between the user and team is very important which is achieved by the AC plan as both have to be honest with each other to attain the best results. The client has particular expectations and the team has various scenarios regarding the development and formation of the product.
- Usually, a software development plan diverges into tasks each of which after accomplishment is discussed and checked if the requirements are met and this has been made easy due to the acceptance criteria plan.
- This helps in the easy planning and distribution of resources.
PROJECT MANAGER ACCEPTANCE
The project manager under the supervisor along with his team in collaboration creates a project acceptance criteria template according to the client’s demand.
The prosperity of the project is determined by the approval of the customer. Deliverables and other requirements are observed on the ground of standards of acceptance criteria. The project scope aids in defining the criteria. When the customer is pleased with the final product then the acceptance criteria are achieved.