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How to read the Burn-Up / Landing Zone

This chart is intended to show the range of possible delivery dates for a project, based on the actual throughput of the team. Users can alter some of the calculations around throughput and scope in order to see what impact this would have on the dates.

Image: Burn-up (Landing Zone) Chart


  1. The ‘landing zone’ – this represents the likely area that this project will ‘land’. i.e. between the optimistic and pessimistic throughput lines and the upper and lower Scope lines.
  2. This date range assumes that there is minimal increase in scope from today
  3. This date range shows likely dates if Scope continues to increase more rapidly
  4. The solid red dots in this chart show the data points that were used to calculate the mean trajectory of the scope. Similarly solid red dots on the throughput line indicate which data was included in the calculation of the mean throughput rate.
    • In the example below, we have only used the most recent 50% of the history of the project to calculate the mean throughput and scope growth rate. The difference in dates between the two shows the sensitivity of the dates to the assumptions made.
  5. Shows the upper rate of scope increase – hopefully including rework and non-functional work
  6. Indicates that there is not additional scope expected

  • Only the solid red dots are included in the calculation of the mean throughput and scope.

Image: Landing Zone with less history used in projection


Bugs in scope - toggle-able

  • The toggle up at the top (1) will show the bugs as a proportion of the overall scope (2).
  • This is useful to show bug trends.

Image: Bugs shown as proportion of scope


Clicking on the vertical 'bug bar' will show a table of the bugs allowing them to be opened in TFS

Image: Showing table detail of the bugs


Unestimated PBIs - toggle-able

  • The toggle up at the top shows the unestimated PBIs as a proportion of total number of PBIs, as a vertical bar (1) and the scale on the right hand side (2).
  • This shows how much of the current scope has been estimated by the team. Again the trend is as important as the actual number.

Image: Unestimated PBIs as a proportion of the total number of PBIs


Lightening fast filtering in the data panel

  • By clicking on a dot in the burn-up you will see this data panel. Use this to rapidly find a specific PBI, by text or other field attribute.
  • It's one of the easiest ways to navigate through the PBIs in an iteration

Table for rapid filtering and download


Filter results with this panel


Type-ahead search shows the results immediately


Details of the projected lines

  • If you click on one of the projected (dotted) lines, for either scope or throughput, you will see the maths that has been used to create the angle of the line.
  • This shows how much of the history has been used to calculate the mean.

Image: Maths behind the Scope projection


  • The mean growth rate of scope is based on the history. It shows how much of the history has been used and the number of samples. The value of each sample is shown.
  • The growth rate of -10 and -110 (in this example) show the rate of decrease of the growth. So every interval (5 days in this example) the rate of growth (34/interval) is reduced by 10% - until is is flat.

Image: Maths used for the throughput projection


  • The mean rate of throughput (28.6) is using 65% of the history of the project i.e. the last 9 of 14 samples.
  • The Standard deviation (SD) of this historical data is 31.4
  • The projections are set at 0.15 x the SD.