Build Better Products with a Human-Centered Product Backlog (Repeat)

Join this free online course to learn how to build better products by balancing human needs, business values, and technical feasibilities with a human-centered product backlog.

This course was retired in October 2023.

Self-paced since July 27, 2022
Language: English
Subtitles (auto-generated): Deutsch, English, Français, Español

Course information


This course was retired in October 2023.

Course Summary

The world is becoming more complex and digital transformation is radically changing people’s lives. This in turn leads to rising expectations for products and services. Hence, product organizations have to change the way they build products.

On the one hand, product teams use design thinking to understand what should be developed and why, through early involvement of users and iterative testing of first hypotheses. On the other hand, they follow agile methodologies and frameworks like Scrum to get guidance on how to develop the software product and its features.

In this course, we address the topics most product teams struggle with: the transition from user research to a sophisticated product backlog structure that ensures the delivery of high value for users at all times. If you’re interested in understanding how to balance human needs, business value, and technical feasibility with a human-centered product backlog, this course is made for you. We’ll show you with hands on examples how to ensure proper requirements engineering by applying user story mapping (USM), which helps to create a shared understanding between design thinkers and experts, architects, developers, and product owners about the benefits for the user, the value for the business, and the complexity of transforming user requirements into features.

For the relaunch of this course we have something special for you! We managed to win Sven Denecken for an interview to share his point of view on what is required to develop software products especially in the cloud. You can access this bonus unit already prior to the course start.

At the end of the course, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge, methods, and tools to deliver great products that users love.

Course Characteristics

Course Content

Week 1: Good Product Backlog Definition
Week 2: Product Backlog Structure and User Story Mapping
Week 3: Product Backlog Validation and Refinement
Week 4: Product Backlog Ranking
Week 5: Final Exam

Target Audience

  • Anyone who creates and refines product backlogs
  • Anyone interested in UX and Agile development methodologies
  • Software developers and product owners, design thinking and Agile coaches

Course Recommendations

Further Learning

Further learning_podcast Episode 20: Learn How to Build Better Products with a Human-Centric Product Backlog – openSAP Invites

About Further Content Experts

Heike Busch

pic Heike Busch

Heike Busch is an agile coach and product owner for the agile cross-function at SAP Customer Innovation & Maintenance (CIM). As well as driving agile topics in the organization, she also supports her colleagues and our customers in continuously improving their agile way of working. Heike has 22 years of experience at SAP in a number of roles, including developer, architect, quality manager, and scrum master. Her interest and passion in lean, agile, and scrum began in 2006.

Follow Heike on LinkedIn

Gudrun Leonhard

pic Gudrun
Gudrun Leonhard Marquard is an agile coach and trainer at SAP. She helps agile leaders and agile teams to evolve and focus on creating customer value. The systemic business coach education complements her holistic coaching approach. She is also the product owner for the internal SAP standard scrum course.
Gudrun has 30 years of experience in the software industry in various roles, and 14 years of lean and agile experience.
She holds a master’s degree in business administration.

Markus Peter

pic Markus Peter
Markus Peter is an agile coach and trainer at SAP. He supports SAP engineering teams in learning and applying the scrum approach to continuously improve and become more agile. He also supports leaders in adopting agile leadership behaviors.
Markus is a systemic business coach with more than 20 years of experience in software engineering, and became interested in agile and scrum as early as 1999. He has also developed courses and is an active facilitator for both classroom and online learning. Markus holds a PhD in physics.

Previous Versions of This Course:

Previous versions of this course are available here:
Build Better Products with a Human-Centered Product Backlog (June 29 through August 04, 2021)

Course contents

  • Course content no longer available

  • Bonus

  • Week 1:

    Good Product Backlog Definition
  • Week 2:

    Product Backlog Structure and User Story Mapping
  • Week 3:

    Product Backlog Validation and Refinement
  • Week 4:

    Product Backlog Ranking
  • I Like, I Wish:

    We Love Your Feedback … And Want More
  • Final Exam:

    Good Luck!

Enroll me for this course

The course is free. Just register for an account on openSAP and take the course!
Enroll me now


Course End
Jul 27, 2022
Course Start
Jun 21, 2022


This course was rated with 4.64 stars in average from 46 votes.

Certificate Requirements

  • Gain a Record of Achievement by earning at least 50% of the maximum number of points from all graded assignments.
  • Gain a Confirmation of Participation by completing at least 50% of the course material.

Find out more in the certificate guidelines.

This course is offered by

Boris Bezirtzis

Boris Bezirtzis is an innovation coach and design thinking expert, and was one of the first design thinkers at SAP. He is the global design thinking lead at SAP Customer Innovation & Maintenance and facilitates a DT coaching community with more than 30 coaches. He combines agile and human-centered design principles to make innovation real in large customer projects, innovative products, and smaller innovation sprints.

Boris studied industrial design in Germany and did Master of Fine Arts (MFA) focusing on user research and co-creation at the Ohio State University in Columbus Ohio, USA. Boris is an SAP Mentor, has designed several design and innovation training camps, and was a speaker at the Lean Startup Conference in Frankfurt and Wiesbaden, as well as other events.

Follow Boris on LinkedIn

Nikolai Vetter

Nikolai Vetter is a UX designer, design thinking coach, and innovation expert at SAP Customer Innovation & Maintenance. His focus is on building next-generation software products with customers and partners in co-innovation engagements.

Before joining SAP, Nikolai worked at a retail fashion company, where he created unique omni-channel shopping experiences while building up UX competence and driving an agile mindset in software development projects. He holds a master’s degree in innovation management and certifications as a scrum master and in User Experience & Usability.

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Sabrina Jahn

Sabrina Jahn supports theSAP Customer Innovation & Maintenance team as a working student. Her focus is on connecting design thinking and agile to develop innovative products. She is a design thinking coach and currently enrolled as a master’s student in product development.

Before joining SAP, Sabrina studied fashion design and gained experience in designing for a sports fashion company. She has also worked in innovation management at an automotive company and has engaged in consulting activities for a startup.

Follow Sabrina on LinkedIn

Sven Denecken

Sven Denecken holds the role of COO for SAP S/4HANA and also heads the P&I SAP S/4HANA Product Success, Co-Innovation & Content team. In this role, Sven ensures the SAP S/4HANA product portfolio is aligned with market and customer requirements and drives thought leadership. ​

Sven’s many years of experience working with customers and partners together with an extensive network that includes the SAP field organization and industry analysts, enable the SAP S/4HANA development teams to respond quickly to changing markets to ultimately provide a solution that helps customers gain a competitive advantage.​

​In co-innovation projects with customers, Sven and his team discover key trends and next practices in the use of new technologies to assure the evolution of both the product and content. ​

As a member of SAP’s executive leadership, cooperating closely with the respective teams, Sven supports the strategy of SAP’s solutions and its alignment with customers, SAP’s field organization, and the ecosystem.

Follow Sven on LinkedIn or on Twitter