Do you have a "Definition of Ready"?
As part of the update to the Scrum Guide for 2013, there is a concept of a product backlog being "Ready".
Just like how the team has a Definition of Done as a checklist for completing a PBI, the product owner needs a Definition of Ready to get the PBI in a state that’s ready for it to be added to a sprint. This should be done as part of the refinement (aka grooming) process and will greatly streamline the sprint planning meeting.
A recommended “Definition of Ready” would be:
- Has enough detail for the team to action (usually via good Acceptance Criteria)
- Has Business Value assigned
- Has effort assigned
- Is in the Approved state