WSJF Feature Prioritization

by
Ducalis.io team

What is the Eisenhower Matrix

Eisenhower matrix or box (aka Importance Urgency matrix) is a prioritization tool that helps you visually divide a task list into four parts depending on the best sequence of action: Do First, Schedule, Delegate, Don’t Do.

Why using the Matrix

A matrix is a great tool to slice and dice your backlog into four parts and gives you a bird’s eye view of all your tasks and their impact. Such clear visual representation is convenient when building plans and strategies.

Who can use the Eisenhower Matrix

Anybody can use the Importance Urgency matrix to prioritize anything from personal to-dos to job duties for best productivity. The matrix can be applied to both daily or weekly tasks and monthly or yearly projects as well.

How to use the Eisenhower Matrix Template

1. Prepare a list of tasks to prioritize

First of all, decide on the task list requiring prioritization. You can get the tasks into the template in 3 ways:

  1. Importing from a task tracker
  2. Importing from a spreadsheet
  3. Writing tasks down into the template
Connecting a task tracker is most convenient as your tasks will always be synced

2. Set up the template for your team

The template has super-standard criteria scored from 0 to 3:

Importance—How important is it for the main objective?

Urgency—How urgent is it? Is there a deadline soon?

These descriptions are too general and hard to estimate. Important for what objective? It means you should at least always keep it in mind. And if you evaluate with a team? Every member will have their own idea of ‘Importance’. In the end, such estimations won’t make any sense.

Pinpoint your main objective your tasks must influence to help you prioritize better. Our templates are fully customizable and we recommend you adjust criteria descriptions.

  • You use the matrix for your personal growth? State it—‘How important is this task for my self-improvement? Will it help me to master my skills?’
  • You use it to improve a business metric? Define it—‘How important is it for Acquisition improvement? Will it help us to get more leads?’
Open criteria settings and write what is important for you

3. Evaluate and decide on priorities

You can evaluate all tasks by yourself, but if it’s a team project, it’s best when every team member assigns their scores.

After the assessment, all the tasks will be placed into the four quadrants according to the scores they got:

  • Do First — high importance and high urgency.
    Tasks that are important to your goals and cannot be delayed, so you must take action now.
  • Schedule — high importance and low urgency.
    Tasks that are important but not burning, and you should allot time for them in the nearest future.
  • Delegate — low importance and high urgency.
    Tasks that aren’t that important for the objective but still urgent. Think if somebody can help you with it or if it may be eliminated. If not, it’s better to complete them after ‘Do First.’
  • Don’t Do — low importance and low urgency.
    Tasks that are neither important nor urgent. Deleting these tasks from your plans will save your time and efforts.
Quadrant names and emojis are also changeable and you can set them up as it would be more intuitive to you

Inside each quadrant, the tasks are also listed by their significance. You can pick top tasks from several quadrants, or choose one quadrant of focus, expand it full screen, and complete only its tasks.

Expand a quadrant and discuss its tasks if you all agree it’s your priority

But please don’t forget—prioritization is just a tool to help you decide, not decide for you. So if you think that one task is more important than the other and must be done first—so be it. Discuss your priorities with the team. At the end of the day, collaborative prioritization is the best tool for team clarity and shared understanding.

Who and What is the WSJF Feature Priorities Template for

This template is great for teams that need a business-driven prioritization for maximum economic benefit. It works for evaluating features, projects, user stories, ideas, and hypotheses.

Produce maximum economic benefit with Weighted Shortest Job First (WSJF) framework, aka CD3 - Cost of Delay Divided by Duration. Estimate how much you may lose (CoD) and how much time you need for implementation.

⚖️ Pros and Cons

✅️️ Focuses on increasing the ROI with limited human resources.

✅️ Same score scales help to achieve higher consistency in calculations and predictability of results.

❌ Time-consuming prioritization since considers many factors.

❌ Subjective estimation. Scores may be manipulated.

WSJF Feature Priorities Template Settings

Note! The template is fully customizable. You can change it for your convenience.

Criterion 1

  • Name: Business value
  • Impact: value
  • Weight: 1
  • Scores: 0, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8
  • Description: What is the value to the business? How will it impact revenue? Are there negative impacts if we delay?

Criterion 2

  • Name: User value
  • Impact: value
  • Weight: 1
  • Scores: 0, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8
  • Description: What is the value to the user? How important is this for the users? Will users prefer this solution over another?

Criterion 3

  • Name: Time criticality
  • Impact: value
  • Weight: 1
  • Scores: 0, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8
  • Description: How urgent is it for the business/product? Does the value decay over time? Is there a fixed deadline? Will users wait or move to another solution?

Criterion 4

  • Name: Risk reduction
  • Impact: value
  • Weight: 1
  • Scores: 0, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8
  • Description: Does it reduce the risk of future delivery? How important is this to eliminate risks ahead?

Criterion 5

  • Name: Opportunity enablement
  • Impact: value
  • Weight: 1
  • Scores: 0, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8
  • Description: Will this feature enable new business opportunities? Is there value in the information we will receive?

Criterion 6

  • Name: Job Size
  • Impact: effort
  • Weight: 1
  • Scores: 0, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8
  • Description: How big/complex is the implementation? Are there dependencies that can make it more time-consuming?
wsjf agile framework criteria settings in ducalis.io
You can add new criteria, edit current criteria settings, assign them for specific people to evaluate, or delete them completely.
Read more on how to add, edit, or delete evaluation criteria.

Evaluation Results Display

The evaluation results are available in two views: Top Priorities and Matrix. They calculate priorities differently and have different features for decision-making. You can easily switch between the view tabs—they are always available inside any board.

Top Priorities

The Top Priorities page calculates weighted decisions and displays them in a list. The main factor is the weight setting of the criterion as it determines its influence: how positive or how negative. All scores are multiplied by the weight.

The calculation formula in this template is Value Sum divided by Effort:

( (Business value Score * 1) + (User value Score * 1) + (Time criticality Score * 1) + (Risk reduction Score * 1) + (Opportunity enablement Score * 1) ) / (Job Size Score * 1) = WSJF Score
Evaluated features on Ducalis.io Top Priorities page with the WSJF total score breakdown.
Evaluated features on Ducalis.io Top Priorities page with the WSJF total score breakdown.
Read more about Top Priorities features.
Read more about formulas and how to change them.

Matrix

The Matrix page calculates non-weighted decisions and displays them in a 2x2 matrix. The main factor is the impact setting of the criterion as it determines its axis: value or effort. The scores are not multiplied by the weight.

On the Matrix page, Business value, User value, Time criticality, Risk reduction, Opportunity enablement, and Job Size work as filters. Toggle the criteria to count or discount when distributing tasks among the quadrants: Quick Wins, Major Projects, Fill-Ins, Thankless Tasks. You can rename the quadrants at your convenience.

Evaluated features on Ducalis.io Matrix page distributed among quadrants of a priority matrix.
Evaluated features on Ducalis.io Matrix page distributed among quadrants of a priority matrix.
Read more about Matrix features.

Two-Way Sync

You can use a Ducalis.io evaluation board by creating new tasks in it or uploading a spreadsheet.

You can also connect your team’s task tracker to get awesome benefits.

Task Tracker ➞ Ducalis.io Sync

Connect your task tracker for the automatic sync. Set up the filter once, and tasks inside Ducalis.io will always mirror your actual backlog.

Ducalis.io task filter setting for Asana backlog
Example of Ducalis.io task filter setting for Asana backlog

Ducalis.io ➞ Task Tracker Sync

If you connect your backlog to sync tasks with Ducalis.io, you can also sync Ducalis.io priorities back. Evaluate tasks and send their ranking to the task tracker to sort the backlog by priority, and for the whole team to see what’s important.

Ducalis.io priority ranking sync with Asana
Example of Ducalis.io priority ranking sync with Asana