Create a User Story

A user story is a statement of user functionality formulated as a few sentences in the everyday language of the user that can be completed within an iteration. The user story represents a placeholder for a later conversation regarding details and acceptance criteria. An agile workspace references user stories.

User stories consist of the following topics:

Create a user story

You can create a user story in Rally from several locations. This flexibility allows you to progress through work activities and create a user story whenever you need it from logical positions within the Rally application.

Your ability to create user stories is dependent upon the user role and permissions you have been assigned for the workspace. When you create a user story from the inline add option, the user story is ranked in the page at the position you specify in the Rank field if Drag & Drop ranking is configured.

Concurrency conflicts may occur if multiple users edit the same user story. The first user to make their changes and click the Save & Close, Save & New, or Save buttons will have their changes committed. When subsequent users make their changes to the same user story then attempts to save, they are presented with an option to Review my changes or Overwrite with my version.


If you select Review my changes, you are returned to the user story editor so the changes can be copied and not lost. If you select Overwrite with my version, your changes are saved and the other users changes are overwritten. Overwrite with my version where attachments are added and edited will save both users' changes as well as apply deletions.

View the Backlog and detail pages

View the Backlog page

The Backlog page is an inventory of all user stories created in your project. This view provides a summary listing of all user stories represented in Rally and is the gateway to viewing individual user story details and their associations.

The Backlog page allows you to inline edit a user story by double-clicking within the highlighted row.

You may manually rank user stories on the page by dragging the user story up or down in priority relative to other user stories on the page. Click the user story and drag it up or down in priority on the page.

View the User Story detail page

The User Story detail page provides a view of an individual user story. From the User Story Detail page, you can:

  • View a read-only display of a single user story in its entirety including all current field values and details.
  • Perform multiple activities on the displayed user story.
  • Navigate to other work items associated with the displayed user story.

The sidebar located on the left of the page displays any associated artifacts related to the current story. Click any link to navigate to a summary view of the related artifacts of the indicated type.

Click the url URL icon in the upper-left corner of the detail page to open a new detail User Story page with the complete URL to this work item. From here you can copy the URL to use as a reference link in email to team members, or attachments to other work items, and so on.

Use the Actions button located in the upper-right of the User Story detail page to select action options such as Edit, New, Copy, Print, Delete, and other specific actions. As you navigate through the associations, the Actions button menu options vary in relation to the artifact you are viewing. The top section of the menu options apply to the root artifact (in this case the user story), while the lower half of the options apply to the associated work item.

If you expect to see a field that is not on this screen, it may have been Hidden by the administrator.

User story fields

These field values can be set when creating or editing a user story.

Field Description
ID A system-generated ID is assigned to your user story. It is unique and will never change. The ID consists of a tag prefix and a numerical value. The tag can be customized by your system administrator to reflect a differentiating prefix for each work item defined in your project.
Name The user story name allows you to easily reference a user story. The red highlight indicates it is a required entry field.
Tags Tagging provides all team members the ability to logically group and filter user stories, defects, and tasks.
Description A Rich Text Format field for the description of your user story. Capture a brief description of your user story here. Enter any text in the description that will help all team members clearly understand the intent of the user story.
You can copy and paste images in this field.
Attachments Browse for a file to attach to your work item details.
Owner Specify the owner of the user story.
Schedule State Indicates the progress that has been made toward the completion of the user story. There are six states that can be set from the drop-down list. The first and last states can be customized by your subscription administrator to help you better manage your process. The following identifies the default states that the user story can move through:
  • Defined: The user story is elaborated enough that the development team can write tasks and provide estimates. This is the defaulted state value for a new user story and cannot be customized.
  • In Progress: The user story has been committed to an iteration and work has begun on the user story. This state can not be customized.
  • Completed: All related tasks/user stories have been completed. This state can not be customized.
  • Accepted: All acceptance criteria for the user story has been met. This state can not be customized.
Blocked Indicates that work on any or all of the related tasks for the user story can not continue until all issues preventing further progress are removed. If any related task has been marked blocked, this field will automatically be checked in the editor. You can also manually block the user story by editing it and activating the checkbox. The blocked state will appear in the Iteration Task Status view in red to indicate blocked, but will still carry the associated state letter so the initial state of the user story is not lost.
Iteration Indicates the iteration to which the user story is assigned. Select an iteration by clicking the downward arrow to the right of the respective field. A drop-down list of all available iterations contained in the project displays.
Plan Estimate Use this field to record how much effort is estimated to complete the user story. This field is a real number and can accept three digits followed by a decimal and two more digits. The units are defined by your administrator.
Task Estimate and To Do Read-only fields. The values contained in these fields are rolled up from all associated tasks and displayed in the user story.


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