Salesforce.com, Amazon.com, Web.de, Yahoo.com and a lot of other companies that are doomed to fail if they do not continuously work on their architecture. These companies do have a big question:
How do you create an understanding how fast you build / re-do your architecture?
I do have a proposal to solve this question:
- You might have an architecture team: An architecture board, team, system architecture team
- They create their own backlog of functionality they would like to develop.
- Now they size every backlog item using a new unit: architecture points.
- This generates a number for the overall backlog
- Now they distribute their architecture stories to the feature teams.
- The feature teams pick what they want to do and give these architecture stories Story Points based on their own opinions.
- At the end of the sprint the feature teams will have had developed the architecture story. This get reflected as such and such amount of architecture points is done.
- The architecture team counts all architecture points developed by the feature teams and add the architecture points they have build themselves. This gives you the overall architecture velocity of the company in architecture points.
- Now you can do what a product owner always does. He creates a release plan based on the backlog size and the velocity of the team(s).